Sun. Jun 16th, 2024

End this horror! Sea in Faroe Islands turns blood red as 138 pilot whales slaughtered

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun1,2024

Nearly 140 pilot whales have been slaughtered in a killing that “exceeded anything we have ever documented before”, campaigners have said.

A pod of more than 200 were hunted and driven into a beach at Hvannasund, in the Faroe Islands, 200 miles north of Scotland, on Saturday.

At least 138 animals were killed for their meat and blubber, while the remaining pod was left in the shallow bloodied waters in the fjord.

Valentina Crast, campaign lead at Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, said: “The brutality of this hunt exceeded anything we have ever documented before, as a pod of more than 200 pilot whales were hunted and driven for hours and later divided.”

Locals surround pods using speed boats then drive them towards shore, where they are slaughtered using sharp lances similar to a spear.

Whaling in the Faroe Islands, or grindadráp, happens most often during the summer, although a hunt can be called at any time.

The brutal killing at the weekend was the second of the year.

Rob Read, chief operating officer of the Paul Watson Foundation UK, said: “The Faroese use the tight-knit bonds of kinship between pilot whales against them and so whilst it is a relief that some animals were saved, [this] event will take a massive toll on this family group.

“It would be no surprise if more animals die as a direct result of today’s grindadráp, either from injuries sustained from boats and rocks, or from the sheer stress of today’s events.” 

By Sunday, the surviving members of the pod managed to move back out to sea but campaigners said it was “one of the most reckless and careless hunts we have ever documented”.

Ms Crast said: “The disregard of the remaining pod that was left in the fjord for more than 24 hours has been reported to the police by Sea Shepherd as animal cruelty.”

Faroese are fiercely defensive of the hunt, which is an important part of their culture and traditions. 

Whale meat and blubber remain a popular dish, despite concerns about the high levels of mercury.

Francisco Guerreiro, a Member of the European Parliament, accused the EU of helping to “fund this barbarity”.

He said: “The EU continues to fund this barbarity by open commerce with the region.

“If we revised the trade agreement considering these unnecessary actions, more pressure would come to the Faroese people. 

“Nowadays there’s no rationale behind supporting these cruel events. Like bullfighting, these barbaric events must end.”

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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