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Pilot Whales Brutally Slaughtered in the Faroe Islands

Pilot Whales Brutally Slaughtered in the Faroe Islands

Two activists undercover in the Faroe Islands have discovered horrendous, illegal, and surreptitious whaling practices happening there.

The activists disguised themselves as fishermen and in addition to doing research, they observed at least one hunt of pilot whales on the island of Sandoy.

The hunt the activists witnessed was horrifying to imagine. Firstly, the pod of pilot whales that was driven to the town of Husavik was much too large to be killed in one session by the town’s population, which has a large percentage of elderly citizens. As a result, the whales were killed over the course of two days. 

The whales to be slaughtered on the second day were tied by their tails to boats, a violation of Faroe law. The whales “thrashed about in panic” all night trying to get to their family, according to the activists.

After spending their night panicked, tied by their tails in blood red water, the remaining whales were killed the next day.

The residents of the Faroe Islands contend that hunting pilot whales is a traditional community activity with no commercial component.

But not only did the activists witness commercial selling of whale meat, it’s a mathematical certainty there’s a commercial aspect. The amount of meat gained from that single hunt was enough to allow every single man, woman and child on the island of Sandoy to eat a 7 ounce whale steak every day for a year. That’s simply unrealistic because the high levels of mercury and PCBs in pilot whale meat make it a serious health risk to consume more than once a month for your average person. Additionally, Faroe Island physicians say that women and children who are, or might become, pregnant should avoid pilot whale meat entirely.

“Tradition” is the refrain of cultures that continue impractical, cruel, outdated practices like whale hunting. The people of the Faroe Islands insist that hunting pilot whales is a cultural tradition that should be preserved. But when the hunts are cumbersome and provide an excess of meat that is even worse for one’s health than beef and chicken, the only motivation for continuing this “tradition” is commercial.

What is called a cultural tradition is nothing more than a for-profit aquatic slaughterhouse.

The undercover activists on the Faroe Islands reported seeing deception at every level. Allegedly, police were breaking the law by sanctioning the hunt’s illegal practices like tying the whales to boats. And according to reports, the meat was being sold on the open market, which has always been denied by the Faroe people.

The activists saw blatant violations of animal welfare guidelines and one said it was “incomprehensible” that the governments of both the Faroe islands and the Danish mainland would continue to lie about the hunts.

Whale hunting is like all other animal industries in that it profits from cruelty and murder, benefits from lax oversight by so-called “animal protection” agencies, and will continue as long as there is an economic incentive. Go vegan and take away that incentive. Boycott all animal products and speak out against cruel and absurd cultural “traditions” that perpetuate violence and murder against innocent animals.

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Photo: ahisgett

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267 comments

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10:51PM PST on Mar 1, 2012

This completely breaks my heart. I wish this could and would be stopped, now. I love animals of all sorts and they all deserve to live safe and happy lives!

12:55AM PDT on Oct 22, 2010

It is terrible. these people that do these things must be very miserable inside because of their ignorance to do anything worth while, so I gues they do these things to get attenion. also they are very cruel to start with with and very bad human condition. if they want atention they shoud go up t0op the highest building in the world and jump from it. It sis very scary tolive among this kind of poeple that kills with no compassion and even enjoy doing it. ver very scary. I am also shure that they would love to do it to humans as well, but it is a big risk so they do it to innocent, hjelpless animals because deep down these mean people are a bunch of cowards.

4:05PM PDT on Sep 29, 2010

Another horror to keep me awake at night. I will remember this and do all that I can to help bring this to an end.

2:54AM PDT on Sep 26, 2010

What a dreadful story!

4:30PM PDT on Sep 21, 2010

Thanks Rene I was just about to say the same thing to Mangus. Most of us individuals want to end factory farming. The only humans that want it are those that profit from it. Peace. Happy Peace Day.

2:24PM PDT on Sep 21, 2010

Magnus...sorry kid....just because there are factory farms and other inhumane situations regarding animals here in the USA does not make the slaughter on your island right or ok.A majority of Americans are against factory farms,puppy mills and the like.Many of us are actively advocating against these as well.

12:12PM PDT on Sep 21, 2010

Look. Im from The Faroe Islands, and i dont think you should be so upset by these killings. Why? I don't know but think about all the pigs, chickens, cows, etc. etc. And also because of the proffesionalism in the killings. The people who are in the slaughter hit their knives right on a spinal chord, so they die in 3 seconds.
All your pigs for example... 100000 pigs in one place, now hats not human acts for me, and for other faroese. and all your chickens that are in so small cages that they cant even turn around, now seriously come on!
Sorry for spelling mistakes im not english and 14 years old

9:28PM PDT on Sep 20, 2010

The problem is there are just too many humans on this planet. We are too bloodthirsty and barbaric. Nothing can survive us for long. When we finally run though all of the rest of animal life on this planet perhaps then our own species will become the object of our voracious appetites. You reap what you sow.

1:25PM PDT on Sep 19, 2010

My son and his girlfriend watched a hunt this summer. It was in his words a 'difficult thing to watch'. A family member helped to kill a calf who had become seperated from its mother - nobody knew what to do. I find this this just heartbreaking. The men of the town waited for the sign to start the killing and charged down to the water like crazed vikings. Why is this allowed to happen in 2010? it is an excuse to kill living animals for no good reason other than blood lust. It is barbaric just like bull fighting. I wish this could stop.

11:55PM PDT on Sep 18, 2010

How can we get them to stop?

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