Close to 100 whales butchered in the North Atlantic

Environmental campaign group Sea Shepherd UK took photos of the dead whales.
Environmental campaign group Sea Shepherd UK took photos of the dead whales. Photo credit: Sea Shepherd/Twitter

Warning: This article contains content that may disturb some people.

Nearly 100 whales have been butchered in the Danish-owned Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic.

Gruesome images show the sea red with blood as the pilot whales were herded into a bay, dragged onshore and slaughtered.

Environmental campaign group Sea Shepherd UK took photos of the dead whales - including five pregnant whales.

"Sea Shepherd crew in Vestmanna have counted 94 long-finned pilot whales killed in today's grindadrap hunt, including 4 calves and at least 5 pregnant whales," it posted to Instagram.

"This grindadrap hunt involved over 5 hours of Faroese boats harassing and chasing the pod -and the killing took around 12 minutes with the stressed and exhausted pilot whales of all ages being killed indiscriminately in front of their family members until all were left silent on the blood-red sands of Vestmanna."

Their meat and blubber was harvested before the remains of the whales, calves and fetuses were dumped back into the ocean using dump-trucks and large diggers.

Faroese locals say the whale hunt is sustainable as there are an estimated 778,000 whales in the eastern North Atlantic region and they only hunt on average 800 pilot whales annually.

"The Faroese have eaten pilot whale meat and blubber since they first settled the islands over a millennia ago. Today, as in times past, the whale drive is a community activity open to all, while also well organised on a community level and regulated by national laws," a section of the Visit Faroe Islands website reads.

"The meat and blubber from the hunt is distributed equally among those who have participated. Those who are too ill or weak to take part are encouraged to sign up for their share, even though they have not taken part.

"Hunting and killing methods have been improved to ensure as little harm to the whales as possible. All hunters must now obtain a hunting license in order to kill a whale."

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