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Faroe Islands Whale Slaughter Photographed
By Matt J. Weiss, September 22, 2008 @ 02:00 AM (EST)
Our good friend Gunther Deichman brought these images to our attention. He received these images from Mark Cox who photographed the whale slaughter in the Faroe Islands. I have long been aware of the whale slaughter in the Faroe Islands and after living in Denmark for 6 months I learned more and more about. Studying marine mammals at the time there was a lot of discussion about the Faroe Islands since its the best place to see whales, dolphins and porpoises in the area. However, it always came with a caveat which is the whale slaughter.

The whale slaughter is an annual event where thousands of whales are driven into shore where they can be slaughtered, staining the ocean red with blood. This is a traditional cultural event, but like Gunther, I am not really interested in the excuses. The Islanders are so proud of what they are doing though, they are getting the kids involved. That is what is so shocking about the pictures are the kids so happily killing gentle harmless animals.


In fact, they support the kids seeing the slaughtering so much that they give them the day off from school. Talk about a ridiculous field trip. As it appears, the Faroe Islands are doing a great job of breeding the next generation  of senseless animal killers. 



A big thanks to Mark Cox and Gunther for highlighting and documenting this event. 



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Robert E. Smyth
Sep 25, 2008 10:44 PM
Robert E. Smyth wrote:
I am appauled at the whale killing that continues today in Norway, Japan, and Iceland under the "scientific" umbrella. There is nothing more to learn about whales that we don't already know by killing them. What a bunch of BS! Unfortunately, there is so much politics involved that we should enjoy the whales while they are here because the only place you will see them in the near future will be in a museum. There are only an estimated 350 Atlantic right whales left, and their numbers continue to dwindle. There biggest threat here in the US is ship strikes because they frequent the same routes as do the big ships, and Navy, who refuse to slow down to prevent these strikes.
I'm glad you posted these pictures and I don't know why more negative publicity isn't given to these hunts by our own media. Not to mention all the illegal overfishing that is going on around the world. Again, there is so much politics involved it's rediculous.
Although it probably won't do much good, here is the web site for the International Whaling Commission; http://www.iwcoffice.org/conservation/permits.htm
I for one plan on writing them a nasty letter and forwarding the information to all of my friends and family.
If you want to see more disturbing footage, go to seashepherd.org and check out the campaigns to stop the dolphin and whale hunts in Japan where they round up hundreds of dophins, drag them still kicking up a boat ramp and cut them open while they are still alive.
eileen campbell
Nov 2, 2008 6:52 PM
eileen campbell wrote:
These people are sick...this makes me ashamed of being part of the human race...carnage and slaughter and they are revelling in it...no compassion..they need a taste of their own medecine and should have a limb hacked off..just to teach them the meaning of fear and pain...I personally could not live amongst these people..they disgust me to my very core...I would NEVER..NEVER visit the Faroe isles and will be advising all my friends, work colleagues and family not to do so..

These people are monsters and are not civilised.
keirra sikora
Aug 10, 2009 8:24 PM
keirra sikora wrote:
whales and any animal have as much right as humans do to live. i hope this people that are killing this poor beautiful animals soon feel the pain that the millions of whales or any other animal felt when humans were kiling and torchering them.
Baldvin Brynjolfsson
Aug 24, 2009 8:42 AM
Baldvin Brynjolfsson wrote:
This article has no other purpose than to play with the emotions of uninformed people. The Faroe islanders mostly hunted Long Finned Pilet whale. I say hunted because last year the Faroese health officials recommended that the whale was not fit for human consumption because of high toxin levels in the meat. This should be of more concern to you than whale hunting.
Even though the Pilot whale is not classified by the IUCN because of lack of data other institutions have estimated that there are somewhere between 1 million to 200.000 Long Finned Pilot Whales.
Whales hunted in Iceland are mostly Minke whales, of which there are about 100.000 animals in the Arctic seas alone. In fact it is classified as "least concern" by IUCN along with another mammal, humans.
Food does not grow in the supermarket and the islanders have survived on what the sea gave them for over 1000 years. Grindadrap is just a part of that.
The pictures are gruesome but so are slaughterhouses. The whales lose consiuosness in seconds after the first cut and are usually dead with in a minute. If there is a more humane way to kill them I am sure that Faroese people would adapt that method.
You mention that the children are "happily killing gentle harmless animals" and that they will be "the next generation of senseless animal killers".
This is not a culture of killing, this is a culture of surviving. Yes they are proud and happy. They have meat on their plates.

Now, the comments really blew my mind away. Aside from the comment from boboshot it looks like the guest on this site have a tendency for violence. As is often the case with fanatics.
bobshot: The scientific "umbrella" is BS and I support sustainable commercial whaling. The state of the Atlantic Right Whale is terrible and more should be done to preserve them. This is a truly endangered species but the Faroese people have nothing to do with them being on the werge of extincion.
Doreen: "they need a taste of their own medecine and should have a limb hacked off" and then you end by saying that they are not civilized. What a load of mindless self-rightous idiocy. The fact that you're not even vaguely aware of the concept of irony says all that needs to be said about your mental capacity.
"whales and any animal have as much right as humans do to live."
So if you had been born on the fringes of the arctic I suppose you'd rather starve than feed your self. I bet it's all rainbows and unicorns where you live.
"i hope this people that are killing this poor beautiful animals soon feel the pain that the millions of whales or any other animal felt when humans were kiling and torchering them."
What a bout the right of humans to live you just mentioned?

You are misguided at best, dangerous at worst.
Tikpha Asuncion
Mar 11, 2010 9:32 PM
Tikpha Asuncion wrote:
To Baldvin Brynjolfsson:

You say, "The whales lose consiuosness in seconds after the first cut and are usually dead with in a minute." Really?? And you know this because you are a whale? Or do you take part of this needless killing?

Just because a particular whale is not on the endangered list, does not mean it's a green light to continue killing them. There are more than 1 billion people on earth. Should we start a murder spree because we're overpopulated? No!!

"Food does not grow in the supermarket and the islanders have survived on what the sea gave them for over 1000 years." So you're saying that in over 1,000 years the Faroe Islands has not evolved??! I call you BS on that one.

And I HIGHLY doubt that the Faroese are on the "fringe" of starvation today. After all, you slaughter thousands of these mammals every year and NOT TO MENTION leave hundreds to rot. Instead of defending this senseless tradition, you should be advocating the end of it BECAUSE of the amount of mercury in the meat.
alonso berea
May 21, 2010 3:57 PM
alonso berea wrote:
To Tikpha Asuncion,

Dude, you don't have to be the whale (or any animal being killed for the matter) in order to know if it's dead or alive!! If you want I can tell you how to determine the time of death of a mammal in general.

They don't kill because the whales thrive in relatively large numbers!!! They kill the whales out of necessity (to eat). They could change their diet, that's true, but why??? Are whales sacred for you, because every year very sensitive and intelligent pigs and cows are slaughtered and I haven't heard you complains about that. Maby it's because the main theme of this forum is whaling, but if your against the slaughter of animals in general, how do you plan to feed such a big and in many cases poor population? Ohh yea, you would definitely need to end up deforestating to get the land to cultivate. And if you think cetaceans are sacred, keep it to yourself just as Hinduists keep the fact that cows are sacred to them to themselves (I've never seen a petition from them to stop the slaughter of cows).

The fact that they decide to keep their traditions doesn't imply they haven't evolved!! For them the killing of whales is like thanks giving for the Americans, and like Ramadan for Muslims. But of course, you don't understand culture and traditions.

None of these animals are left to riot as the number of whales slaughtered is controled so that they only kill what they can eat, and their meat is highly valued.

I agree with you on the mercury part, but still I have to say, think a bit about what you're writing before you do so!!!! By the way, I'm not Faroese, I'm Mexican, just so you know I'm not biased towards defending my way of life.
natalie friday
Jun 23, 2010 3:05 PM
natalie friday wrote:
In the Solomon Islands (which is much more primitive in its traditions) the tribal peoples have agreed to stop killing dolphins. Unlike the Danish Faroe Islands, these Islands which are very primitive and remote. As I understand they trade dolphin teeth as a form of currency. This is more of a tradition than what is happening in the Faroe Islands, yet these tribal people are agreebale that there should be a change . Shouldnât more be expected of the Faroe Islands? Your comments attempt to defend the indefensible. Shame on you. If you are truly so inhumane and incapable of understanding the apparently obvious welfare grounds for ceasing this barbaric slaughter, then surely you should have the sense to realise that you are slowly poisoning yourselves and your children (in the name of tradition!!?). I am not interested in attacking the people of the Faroe Islands, but most of the world is against you on this and do not accept your senseless excuses, justified in the name of tradition...or commerce...or whaetever other feeble reason you may come up with for your cruel acts.

As Einstein said, "Whenever people say âWe mustnât be sentimental,â you can take it they are about to do something cruel. And if they add âWe must be realistic,â they mean they are going to make money out of it.It is also he who said that you can understand how civilised a society is by the way they treat their animals. This blood thirsty sport has shocked and repulsed the outside world.

It is remarkable that those islanders responsible live at peace with themselves knowing the suffering and pain they inflict on thes creatures which need our care and protection. The scandinavian countries seem to be intent on destroying what we have left of these noble and ancient marine mammals at a time when whales face more threats than ever before. Commercial whaling, habitat destruction, ocean noise pollution, climate change, ship strikes and entanglement in fishing gear, but to name some of the issues they face.

Your remarks condoning these acts show such ignorance. In fact I cannot even believe this issue is being debated. Shame on you.
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