Thousands of gray seals could be spared particularly brutal deaths this year because sealers have been unable to find a buyer for the pelts.
This news comes as the European Union considers a ban on all seal products, an action which some think drove typical pelt buyers to rethink their purchase this year. Multiple sources say the hunt will likely not happen, but Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans still officially say the hunt is on.
“The cancellation of Nova Scotia’s grey seal hunt is a tremendous victory for the seals,” said Rebecca Aldworth, director of Humane Society International/Canada. “It is incredibly heartening to know that thousands of seal pups will be spared from a fate similar to the unbearable carnage we documented last year during the slaughter on Hay Island.”
Some sealers worry that they will not be able to find a buyer for the larger annual harp seal hunt either.
The Humane Society has petitioned the Canadian government to buy-out sealing licenses from affected sealers and to begin developing different economies for coastal communities that rely on the seal hunts to make money.
Photo credit: MGSpiller on Flickr under Creative Commons license.