The anti-whaling ship Bob Barker has docked in Wellington harbour after what its captain says is its most successful mission ever in thwarting Japanese whalers in the Southern Ocean.

The ship, which was part of the Sea Shepherd fleet, has completed 95 days in the area attempting to stop whalers from killing 935 minke whales, 50 endangered fin whales and 50 endangered humpback whales.

WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT. The Sea Shepherd Fleet has located all five vessels of the Japanese whale poaching fleet, including the Japanese factory ship, the Nisshin Maru, inside the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary. Sea Shepherd has also documented the illegal slaughter of Minke whales in this area. Courtesy: YouTube/seashepherd

"They kill these whales within a designated whale sanctuary, they kill these whales despite a global moratorium on commercial whaling and they kill these whales within the bounds of the Antarctic treaty, the ship's captain Peter Hammarstedt said.

The Japanese whaling industry had not yet released the number of whales they had killed this year, but Mr Hammarstedt said he was confident the whaling fleet had not reached "even a quarter of their bogus self allocated quota''.

Advertisement

"We are confident that this campaign - one of the most successful campaigns we've had to date in the Southern Ocean has led to more than 750 whales saved.''

During the campaign, Mr Hammarstedt accused the whalers of attacking his ship on three occasions.

"My vessel still bears the scars on its hull from a collision with one of the Japanese harpoon ships.''

Crews aboard an anti-whaling protest ship in the Southern Ocean have escaped injury but are struggling to mend "significant damage" to their vessel after it was rammed by Japanese whalers. Two protest ships belonging to anti-whaling organisation Sea Shepherd were hit by Japanese whale-processing factory ship, Nisshin Maru. The boats, Steve Irwin and Bob Barker, have been following the vessel in the Southern Ocean to try to prevent the slaughter of whales.

He said 250m of steel cable were dragged across the bow 43 times - "during one of those passes the harpoon vessel collided with my ship, causing substantial damage to my starboard bow''.

Sea Shepherd New Zealand coordinator Michael Lawry said the Japanese had been "very, very aggressive during the whaling season''.

"They've also shown themselves to be very desperate and deeply offensive to the people of New Zealand by coming into our EEZ.''

Last month the Shonan Maru No. 2, which provides security for the Japanese whaling fleet, entered New Zealand's 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

The action prompted a rebuke from Foreign Minister Murray McCully, who said it we was "disappointing''.

Today, Mr Lawry called on the Government to step up and police Japanese illegal whaling practices.

The Bob Barker would be docked in Wellington for the next 10 days in which the ship would be open to the public for tours.