A second crew member from the cattle ship that capsized en route from New Zealand to China off the coast of Japan has been found today, the Japanese coast guard said.

The coast guard said 20-year-old Jaynel Rosals from the Philippines was found on a life raft waving for help, 2km off a small Japanese island.

Rescuers are searching for the remaining 41 crew of the ship believed to have sunk in a typhoon.

The Gulf Livestock 1, which was carrying a cargo of nearly 6,000 cows, issued a distress call in the early hours of Wednesday morning from a position 185km (115 miles) west of Japan's Amami Oshima island.

Japan's coast guard dispatched planes and rescue boats to hunt for the ship and yesterday the ship's 45-year-old Filipino chief officer was found.

Dramatic photos and video released by the coast guard showed the man floating in the darkness in an orange life jacket and being pulled onto a boat with a rope as rescuers battled violent, rolling waves.

The Japanese coast guard rescued the first crew member yesterday

He was quickly brought to a large vessel, where coast guard personnel with surgical masks and gloves wrapped him with blankets.

"Water," said the man, who identified himself as a Filipino in the video.

"Thank you, thank you very much. I am the only one? No other one?" he asked.

The man told rescuers that he had put on a life jacket and dived into the sea after a warning announcement on board, when powerful Typhoon Maysak was passing through the area.

He said one of the boat's engines had stalled and a wave then overturned the ship, which later sank, the coast guard said in a statement.

A battered lifeboat from the capsized ship

Typhoon Haishen was in the northwest Pacific, tracking through the East China Sea towards South Korea.

Three coast guard vessels, five planes and specially trained divers are involved in the search-and-rescue operation.

Japan is currently in its annual typhoon season, and a second massive storm is on course to arrive in the same area around Sunday, according to local forecasters, potentially limiting the time the coast guard can continue to search.

The ship was carrying a crew of 39 Filipinos, two New Zealanders and two Australians, and was charged by Australia-based Australasian Global Exports to carry the livestock.

It was reportedly travelling from Napier in New Zealand to the Chinese port of Tangshan.