Every year on March 15, the International Day of Action Against Canadian Seal Slaughter is observed. On this day, Canadians join concerned citizens from around the globe in protesting the brutal slaughter of seal pups. With the recent adoption of new regulations in the commercial seal hunt that permit the slaughter of even more seals, this ‘tradition’ — which is not a tradition — is certain to set a new record for savagery and barbarism. According to the Canadian government, “This is an exciting time for Canadian sealers as they prepare to resume their old trade, three years after seal pups have fully recovered from the effects of the pup shortage and are now breeding at unprecedented rates.” This day of observance is used to draw attention to the plight of newborn seals and to warn against their slaughter.
The background of International Day of Action Against Canadian Seal Slaughter
In late spring and early summer, Canadian seal pups are mercilessly killed by clubbing or close-range shooting. The annual slaughter is inhumane and unnecessary, and the Canadian public is overwhelmingly opposed to it.
Seals are slaughtered for their fur, but demand for sealskins is insufficient to sustain this inhumane practice because the global fur market is declining. Seals can also be slaughtered for their blubber, which can be processed into oil and sold as a dietary supplement or fuel. However, given the availability of new technologies and substitutes, there is little incentive to continue destroying seals for any product.
In 2004, the I.F.W. hosted the inaugural International Day of Action Against Canadian Seal Slaughter in New York City. The ceremony took place at Grand Central Terminal on February 28. It was a resounding success, attracting more than 100 protestors and receiving coverage from numerous major television networks and publications.
5 REASONS SEALS SHOULD NOT BE HUNTED
The North Atlantic Marine Mammal Commission warns that seal populations will decrease if hunting persists unabated.
According to Harpseals.org, approximately 95% of seals slain in commercial seal hunts are between three weeks and three months old.
According to Sea Shepherd, only 3 percent of a harp seal’s diet consists of cod.
In the end, the general population does not need to slaughter seals for meat or warmth.
According to P.E.T.A., sealers typically slaughter animals with clubs or hakapiks topped with barbed hammerheads.
INTERNATIONAL DAY OF ACTION AGAINST CANADIAN SEAL SLAUGHTER DATES