Today starts the hunt. Not the hunt for knowledge or treasure, but the hunt for murder.
Every year, around March and April, when the new spring harp seal babies shed their fuzzy white coats, which usually starts at 12 days old, thousands of Canadian fishermen make their way to the Canadian Atlantic coastline. However, they are not there for the fish.
They come bearing clubs or hakapiks – a stick with a hooked blade – guns, and knives. These fishermen proceed to brutally slaughter hundreds of thousands of seals, the majority being infants (any seal over 12 days old is legal to kill). They club them to death, hitting them repeatedly over the head until they die. Now, according to new “standards” set in 2008 by the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), sealers are supposed to puncture the skull to make sure the seal is dead. After, they bleed the dead seals by slitting arteries located under the front flippers, then proceed to skin them.
This year, starting today on April 14, 2014, 400,000 harp seals are legally able to be killed, a quota set by the DFO. The majority of those seals are no older than 3 months, and their pelts, oil, and meat is sold while the rest of the seal will be discarded. Claiming also as a reason for the hunt, the DFO states that harp seals are eating all the cod. However, a seals diet only consists of 3% of cod, while the majority of their diet is fish that are actually predators to cod.
Currently, more than 30 countries have stopped their involvement with the seal trade, one of which is the United States. However, many countries still participate, the majority being Norway, Germany, China, and Greenland.
An annual massacre that is both brutal and unnecessary, the Canadian seal hunt needs to be stopped. Luckily, with fellow animal activists, your voice can be heard. Visit Harpseals.org to figure out how YOU can help end the inhumane murder of hundreds of thousands of baby and adult seals.
Want to make a bigger impact? Contact the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans directly. Feel free to express yourself in your own way (keep it clean and educated though!), or use the outline below provided by Animal Culture.
I am appalled by the annual Canadian seal hunt. Hundreds of thousands of seals are brutally murdered, and it is unnecessary.
Because of the continued ban of the seal trade in more than 30 countries, your market for seal skins, oil, and meat has dropped drastically, making this hunt irrelevant. I also understand that a reason for the hunt is that the seals are eating all the cod. However, only 3% of a seal’s diet is cod, and the majority of the seal’s diet consists of fish that are predators to cod.
People from all over the world, including most Canadians, oppose the seal hunt. Because of this seal hunt, Canada is appearing insensitive and behind-the-times with the condoning and involvement in the seal hunt. Please, I urge you to stop this massacre of innocent baby and adult seals. Until this ends, I will not be purchasing Canadian seafood, anything made of seals, and will urge all my family and friends to do the same.
End the Canadian seal hunt!
Signed: (Your Name)
Below is the email for Gail Shea, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. She is the one responsible for setting the seal hunt kill quota.
Secondly, send an email to Keith Hutchings, Fisheries Minister for the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, where the majority of the seal hunt takes place.