Graphic images of the animals sparked outrage among activists, and some locals said the killings undermined the work of whale hunters, who follow a centuries-old tradition that helps feed local people.
the practice of hunting whales and dolphins, known as grinddrophandjob The practice is centuries old in the Faroe Islands and is an important part of the diet of many local people. And many point to Faroese regulations – including the laws on the killing of mammals – that aim to make the practice sustainable as a reason to keep the tradition alive.
But when more than 1,400 white-sided dolphins were killed last weekend – the largest ever caught in the region – and when local news media published graphic images and videos showing Dolphins are being dragged into the bloody water on the beach, even some supporters of the hunt were upset.
Now, the scale of Sunday’s slaughter near Skalabotnur, the islands’ longest fjord, has prompted outrage from animal rights campaigners and caused a split between those who believe dolphins should not be hunted and those who do not. It is said that they are still working continuously.
Alex Cornelison, chief executive of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, said: “Given the time we are in, a global pandemic and the world halting, it is absolutely frightening to see an attack on nature of this scale in the Faroe Islands.” , an organization that works to prevent whale hunting, said in a statement.
Hunting of whales, and less commonly dolphins, occurs all year round in the Faroe Islands – a semi-autonomous Danish archipelago of about 53,000 people between Norway and Iceland – and the practice is completely legal. Boats take the cetaceans to a bay, where they are beached and slaughtered using a tool that cuts off their spines.
Animal rights groups call the hunting cruel and inhumane, and the size of Sunday’s slaughter prompted some proponents of the long-standing cultural practice to speak out.
Government officials said the meat, which is largely distributed among the community for free, was shared in several districts on the islands.
But Hans Jakob Hermannsen, former president of the Faroese Grind Association, a group that supports the practice, told the local broadcaster kringwerp foroya That the killings undermined the work of other whale hunters and fueled opponents of the hunt.
Bjarni Mikkelsen, a marine mammal biologist, said some districts on the islands leave dolphins alone in favor of whales, which provide more meat, and people have become less supportive of dolphin hunting.
“They’re small, and the amount of meat to drive isn’t that big, so it’s nothing to use up energy and time,” he said, adding the big kill: “You could say that generally But no one was happy about it.”
About 265 white-sided dolphins are hunted, he said, and about 130,000 dolphins live in the northeast Atlantic region. According to the Faroese government, an average of 600 whales are caught each year out of a population of about 100,000 around the islands.
Sea Shepherd criticized the hunting as being called without proper authority, and stated that the participants did not have the license to kill the dolphins quickly, as is usually done. The group also said that images of dolphins suggested the animals had been crushed by motorboats.
Jens Jensen, a district sheriff in the area, said his authorization of the hunt was delayed because he was hiking in the mountains. He said that given the large number of dolphins involved, he had approved the use of knives – which do not require a license – to kill them more quickly.
Hunters were searching for the whale on Sunday, Mr Jensen said, and when they saw the pod, they initially thought it was 200 to 300 animals. He decided to take them to a bay at Skalabotnur, he said, noting that it was difficult to estimate the size of the pods during the hunt.
“When they considered it over 1,000, they stopped killing dolphins,” he said.
But critics said Sunday’s killing was an outcry as debate raged among anthropologists over the local hunt for meat.
“We need to raise our voices against this tyranny,” said Barbara J. King, an anthropologist and emerita professor of anthropology at the College of William and Mary, said on twitter. “This is not a local custom and it is not just an ‘error’ of scale. The devastation for #dolphin families is and will be huge.”