Animal

Sea turns red as nearly 300 whales and dolphins are slaughtered in ‘barbaric’ hunt


Around 800 whales and dolphins are killed for meat every summer in the Faroe Islands

Horrifying pictures show the sea turning red as nearly 300 whales and dolphins were reportedly slaughtered in a ‘barbaric’ annual festival in the Faroe Islands.

Around 800 long-finned whales and dolphins are massacred every summer as part of the Grindadràp, which is believed to have taken place for 1,000 years now in the North Atlantic archipelago that sits between Norway and Iceland.

Disturbing images taken this week show hunters rounding the animals up with boats, before forcing them into a bay and killing them.

The meat is then distributed between the hunters who can sell it on, with the government defending the practice by claiming whale meat and blubber is a ‘valued part of the national diet’.

Non-profit marine organisation Sea Shepherd claims a total of 252 pilot whales and 35 dolphins were killed this week alone in Hvalba after a huge pod was found off Sandvik.

A spokesperson for the organisation said: ‘This is the first organised Grindadrap hunt of 2020 with the meat from the hunt distributed first to the approximately 70 hunt participants from the boats and those killing on the beach – and then the remainder to villages on Suðuroy with all recipients then free to sell their share of the meat if they so wish.’

Horrifying images show the sea turning red (Picture:
The ancient grindadrap is believed to have started more than 1,000 years ago

The Blue Planet Society has attacked the practise, saying the whales and dolphins had been ‘brutally and cruelly slaughtered’.

Meanwhile, Charity ORCA has vowed to continue to fighting against the ‘insane blood sport’.

Posting on Twitter, they said : ‘To the beautiful family of pilot whales that were brutally murdered in the Danish #FaroeIslands, we are so deeply sorry… We will keep fighting to end this insane blood sport. RIP beautiful family… Please Boycott the Faroe Islands!’

Whaling is regulated by the Faroese authorities, with the hunters required to have special training certificates before participating.

Animal rights groups have condemned the ‘barbaric’ ritual
The government has claimed whale meat and blubber is a ‘valued part of the national diet’

It was thought that the coronavirus pandemic may have stopped the hunt from taking place this year as gatherings of more than 10 people were banned in the Faroe Islands in March 2020.

However, larger groups are now allowed, with the pandemic widely considered to be under control in the region.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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