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Canada Seal Hunt gets Under Way

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#1    Lottie


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 12:02 AM

Fishermen in Canada have begun what is expected to be one of the biggest seal-hunting seasons in decades.  

The hunters returned to the ice floes after the government gave the go-ahead for more than 300,000 seals to be killed this year.

Authorities say the hunt is now more humane and that the rising seal population needs to be controlled.

As in previous years, animal rights groups are campaigning against the hunt, which they say is cruel.  

The activists also say Canada is trying to appease fishing communities  for political reasons.  

The fishermen blame the seals for the devastation of Canada's fish stocks and have pressed for a renewed culling.

The two-month hunt takes place on ice floes off the Atlantic coast, where the seals give birth.  

Earlier this month, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans said in a statement that Canada's seal population was healthy and abundant.  

"The harp seal herd - the most important seal herd for this industry - is estimated at around five million animals, nearly the highest level ever recorded, and almost triple what it was in the 1970s."


Large-scale hunting will be allowed to continue until the number falls to under four million.

One official told the AFP news agency: "We have to do our job responsibly. We are looking at the middle ground, taking into account conservation and the economic needs of the region."

But anti-hunt activists, who say many animals are skinned alive and die in agony, say they will press ahead with a boycott of Canadian seafood.

"I think that [the Canadian government] are feeling the heat... they can see the really serious implication of going ahead with the hunt this year," said Pat Ragan of the Humane Society of the United States.

"We're going to be encouraging consumers to enter into dialogue with their grocery stores and their restaurants and say, 'Please don't serve Canadian seafood,' or, 'I won't buy Canadian seafood until this hunt is over'," she told Reuters news agency.

The seal hunt in Newfoundland and Labrador went into decline some 25 years ago, after images of hunters clubbing infant seals horrified TV viewers across the world.                                                                              

#2    Seraphina


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 12:32 AM

Words...really can't describe how disgusted I am with this practice....

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#3    Michelle


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 02:11 AM

Why do Canadians allow clubbing them...if the herd has to be thinned there are far more humane ways to do it... angry.gif

#4    Subtemperate



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Posted 30 March 2005 - 02:33 AM

Under new guidelines, most seals are meant to be shot and not clubbed to death in a bid to make the killing more humane.

They shouldnt be clubbing them....

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#5    crazy-cat-lady


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 03:18 AM

You don't see hunters going around clubbing the deer to death, why should it be any different with seals. This world is full of some really ******* mean people!  angry.gif

#6    bathory


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 03:43 AM

Words...really can't describe how disgusted I am with this practice....

i may be wrong but i thought they were doing it to control numbers to avoid overpopulation and the eventual strvation of a far larger number?

#7    Doctor_Strangelove


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 03:57 AM

Although I rarly eat seafood due to the fact that it is expensive in Alberta. Hunting is fun and a good way to balance the ecosystem because most of the preditors are wiped out. But you hunt with a BOW AND ARROW or A GUN, if you want to kill an animal make it as quick, painless, and humane as possible! Anyways they are fishing for sharks right? So if they stopped killing the preditors then they wouldn't have too many seals in the first place.

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#8    Deception


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 04:07 AM

I can't understand why they kill the little ones though. Kill the ones that have atleast had a chance to live.

This world is full of some really ******* mean people!

Well whenever i worked on a c*** fighting farm i had to break chicks necks and wack half dead roosters against trees. And i was only 6 at the time. You do what the boss tells you to do or starve. Or atleast that was how it was with me.

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#9    AztecInca



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Posted 30 March 2005 - 05:35 AM

I guess it has to be done to keep the populatin down to a level where it doesn`t affcet other species in the nearby area, but it still doesn`t stop me being disgusted at it.

#10    warden



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Posted 30 March 2005 - 11:11 AM

I dont agree with clubing them to death,a bullit thriugh the head would do the trick

May be they get some sort of kick out of it,a sort of pervy killing

#11    __Kratos__



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Posted 30 March 2005 - 05:31 PM

Yeah, I don't agree with clubbing them to death. A gun shot would be better. Then again... you do club some fish to kill them after you get them in the boat so would that be considered bad to?

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#12    SilverCougar


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 05:52 PM

Yeah... I'm gunna keep my mouth shut on this one. disgust.gif

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#13    jeceris


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 06:32 PM

the seal hunt went on long before greenpeace made anyone aware of it, and it should continue.
i don't think the seals are necessarily responsible for dwindling fish stocks(cod) off the coast of newfoundland, but this is a pastime and source of income for many of the fishermen on the east coast of canada.
greenpeace, originally an organization out of vancouver, was looking for something in the 70's to draw the world's attention to itself and it's cause, and so they went after the fishermen of the east coast, because they knew the clubbing of cute baby seals would help their cause, and in the end get them more money and support.
the people who participate in the hunt, rely on this income, and the seal meat.
and they never went out there looking to kill all the seals, as they wanted to be able to hunt the following year, and the seal population was kept in check because of this.
if hunting has become a way of life and support for a certain culture, we should not be able to dictate that they stop because we, who do not eat seal meat, and do not wear seal mukluks, find it distasteful.
get yourself to newfoundland and have a piece of seal flipper pie.
and see how important it is for the people there.
but once europe banned the sale, the hunt
sorry, i can't stop with the rants today.

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#14    Irish


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 06:45 PM

All I can say is its a good thing that cows aren’t cute furry things. Not sure I want green peace at my next BBQ.

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#15    Michelle


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Posted 30 March 2005 - 06:53 PM

Cows are cute furry things and I wouldn't want one killed by beating it on the head. I'm sure they don't all do it that way, but there are probably a lot of people still using that method.

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