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Canada's annual commercial seal hunt is the largest commercial hunt of marine mammals on the planet. Facing harsh criticism the world over because of the hunt's cruelty and unsustainability, the Canadian government and fishing industry have spread much misinformation. Here are the basic facts about the hunt.


Which Seals Are Targeted by Canada's Seal Hunt?


Harp seals are the primary target of the commercial seal hunt, and to a much smaller extent, hooded seals are also killed. In 2006, 98 percent of the harp seals killed were pups under just three months of age.


Where Are the Seals Killed?


Canada's commercial seal hunt occurs on the ice floes off Canada's East Coast in two areas: the Gulf of St. Lawrence (west of Newfoundland and east of the Magdalen Islands) and the "Front" (northeast of Newfoundland).


Who Kills Seals and Why?


Sealing is an off-season activity conducted by fishermen from Canada's East Coast. They make, on average, a small fraction of their annual incomes from sealing—and the rest from commercial fisheries. Even in Newfoundland, where 90 percent of sealers live, the government estimates there are only about 4,000 fishermen who actively participate in the seal hunt each year.


How Are the Seals Killed?


The Canadian Marine Mammal Regulations, which govern the hunt, stipulate sealers may kill seals with wooden clubs, hakapiks (large ice-pick-like clubs) and guns. In the Gulf of St. Lawrence, clubs and hakapiks are the killing implement of choice, and in the Front, guns are more widely used


It is important to note that each killing method is demonstrably cruel. Because sealers shoot at seals from moving boats, the pups are often only wounded. The main sealskin processing plant in Canada deducts $2 from the price they pay for the skins for each bullet hole they find—therefore sealers are loath to shoot seals more than once. As a result, wounded seals are often left to suffer in agony—many slip beneath the surface of the water where they die slowly and are never recovered.


Is the Seal Hunt Cruel?


Yes. In 2001, a report by an independent team of veterinarians who studied the hunt concluded that governmental regulations regarding humane killing were neither being respected nor enforced, and that the seal hunt failed to comply with Canada's basic animal welfare standards. Shockingly, the veterinarians found that in 42 percent of the cases they studied, the seals had likely been skinned alive while conscious.


Parliamentarians, journalists, and scientists who observe Canada's commercial seal hunt each year continue to report unacceptable levels of cruelty, including sealers dragging conscious seals across the ice floes with boat hooks, shooting seals and leaving them to suffer in agony, stockpiling dead and dying animals, and even skinning seals alive.


I Donated Some Money and signed there petition

You should too.




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Yes, But There shoul be More Human Ways of this

Not stabbing the with a Board with a nail in the end and dragging its live carcass across the ice just for coats


Are Seals Overpopulated?


No. The Canadian government and sealing industry have, at various times, tried to claim that the harp seal population has "tripled" over the past three decades, or that the harp seal population is "exploding," or that seals are overpopulated.


This is misleading at best. The harp seal population in the Northwest Atlantic is the world's largest; it is a migratory population that spans the distance between Canada and Greenland, and is supposed to number in the many millions.


In the 1950s and '60s, over-hunting wiped out close to two-thirds of the harp seal population. By 1974, the population was considered to be in serious trouble, and senior government scientists recommended suspending the commercial hunt for at least 10 years.


In the early 1980s, the European Union banned the import of whitecoat seal skins, effectively removing the principal market for the hunt at the time. For the next decade, the numbers of seals killed in the hunt dramatically declined, and the harp seal population began to recover.


But in the 1990s, the Canadian government rejuvenated the commercial seal hunt through massive subsidies. And with nearly one million seal pups killed in the past three years alone, we can only wonder what the impact will be on the harp seal population in coming years. Scientists have already sounded the alarm regarding the poor science used by the Canadian government to set quotas for the number of seals killed.

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I remember reading something a while back about this. I've tried seaching for the article but can't find it.


It was about how both sides (the animal rights activists and the seal hunters/canadian gov.) tell the whole truth about what is going on, and the activists are by no mean totally innocent in their campaign to stop the hunt. In other words this has become political.


I'll post the article if I find it.


I'm not saying that the hunting is good or anything, I just trying to say that the activists methods against this are not white, just another (probably lighter) shade of gray.


I always try to research before I put my name on anything. Do i want the hunting to stop? Yes, but I need to find out 100% about what is going on first.

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