Hunters in the Faroe Islands, the Danish territory in the North Atlantic, have conducted their first slaughter of the season—in spite of the coronavirus pandemic. According to environmental organization Sea Shepherd, the hunt took place on July 15th near Hvalba, Suduroy and took 252 pilot whales and 35 white-sided dolphins.
The traditional practice known as Grindadràp, or “the Grind,” involves fishermen surrounding the whales with boats and trapping them in a bay, before getting into the water up to the waist and killing them with knives. The practice has been condemned as barbaric and inhumane by conservation groups, while the Faroese government defends the practice as “sustainable,” arguing that pilot whales are not endangered and the hunt provides food to the local community.
Each year, around 100,000 pilot whales swim close to the Faroe Islands, and the hunt takes around 800 whales annually on average.
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