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VIDEO: Ocean defender

Established in 1977, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is an international, non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization.

Its new vessel, Ocean Warrior, is a 177-foot custom-built ship that brings long-range capabilities (about 1,125 nautical miles) and speed — as much as 30 knots — to the group’s operations.

The ship has four engines, can launch helicopters and smaller boats from its deck and is armed with a water cannon that can spray about 5,000 gallons of water a minute.

Here’s a video of the ship’s maiden voyage:

Sea Shepherd has been active in confronting illegal whaling and fishing operations in the Southern Ocean surrounding the Antarctic continent since 2002.

Although most of the organization’s fleet is dated and uses older technology, Ocean Warrior will have the speed and equipment necessary to catch ships engaged in illegal whaling.