So much for common sense: 270,000 Seals to be Slaughtered
The long-awaited total allowable catch (TAC) for this year’s hunt was finally released by the Canadian government this week. 270,000 seals will be taken by sealers between now and probably next Friday. It’s hard to imagine that many animals will be killed in less than a week, especially when there is so little ice and seals in the Gulf of St. Lawrence now. Our surveillance team has had a tough time locating a large herd of seals. As we listened to the government’s press conference on the TAC announcement I was half expecting the officials to announce a cancellation of the gulf hunt.
At this point, its pretty much common knowledge that there aren’t many seals to be found out there – especially in the southern Gulf region. I can’t say I was shocked to hear that they chose to continue with the hunt – but it has become painfully obvious now that the government isn’t really interested in conservation or taking precautionary measures with regards to the hunt. Opening the southern Gulf hunt doesn’t even really make sense for sealers either…there aren’t many seals out there and it can’t be economically viable for them to purchase fuel and pay a crew to go out and only collect a few animals. Unfortunately, it looks like the small group of harps we’ve been visiting the past few days, won’t be making it much longer.