So far in 2019, 638 cetaceans have been killed in the Faroe Islands. The Dolphin Hunt in Taiji has a quota of 1,749 cetaceans.
The Faroe Islands Hunt
Annually in the Faroe Islands 'the grind' takes place. Also known as grindadráp, 'the grind' can happen at anytime, but typically takes place between July and September and targets small cetaceans, in particular long finned pilot whales and Atlantic white-sided dolphins.
Unlike many other hunts, there isn't a quota or a set hunting season. The residents of the Faroe Islands have eaten the meat and blubber of pilot whales since they settled on the islands and the hunt is an event that the whole community is invited to be a part of, with the meat being distributed amongst everyone who signs up. The practice is deemed 'sustainable' as they kill on average 800 pilot whales each year.
Sea shepherd volunteers have often witnessed these hunts and have described the Faroese as 'without mercy' as every member of the pilot whales pod is killed, including pregnant mothers, weaning babies and the young too. They create a 'wall of sound' with all the boats they have available to force the pod towards the nearest bay. Once the whales are in the shallow water, those waiting on land then go in to drag the whales up the shore to kill them.
The Taiji Dolphin Hunt
The Taiji 'dolphin slaughter' takes place annually from September to March in Taiji, Japan. Fishermen and dolphin trainers hunt dolphins and small whales for the purpose of slaughter and capture.
This year (2019) the quota was put at 1749 cetaceans across 9 difference species of dolphins and whales:
Striped Dolphins - 450
Bottlenose Dolphins (Pacific) - 298
Pantropical Spotted Dolphins - 280
Risso's Dolphins - 251
Pacific White-sided Dolphins - 100
Short-finned Pilot Whales - 101
False Killer Whales - 49
Roughed-toothed Dolphins - 20
Melon-headed Whales - 200
Many are killed for their meat, some are released and some are taken into captivity. Captivity has become a bigger drive for the dolphin hunts over the years as live bottlenose dolphins have been sold for as much as $152,000 USD each, where as a dead dolphin is sold for its meat and is worth about $600.
What can we do?
Both of these hunts are authorised by their respective governments. A petition has been set up urging the leaders of Japan and the Faroe Islands to cease this needless violence and end these hunts. Please take a moment to sign and share this petition (click here).
The other way we can all help is by sharing these awful events with the world. The more people who know about what is going on the more chance we have to put a stop to it. Also stop supporting animals in captivity.