Whaling is a tradition in the Faroe Islands, and people gathered on the island of Eysturoy for the process. Speedboats, jet skis, boats, and other vehicles were used to ambush and kill over 1,428 Atlantic white-sided dolphins. The tragic and preventable massacre caused outrage for many, including the Sea Shepherd marine conservation group.
Annual whale huntings are a Faroese tradition
The Faroe Islands are located in the Atlantic Ocean, it is an autonomous territory of the Kingdom of Denmark, and it has an annual tradition known as grindadráp. This stands for an annual whale hunt; however, dolphins and other seas creatures can be hunted. Usually, pilot whales are the target, and locals insist on preserving this tradition that many outsiders have labeled as brutal and cruel.
Faroese local defends whale hunting
A Faroese-born man declared for a media outlet that he and others began participating in the traditional whale hunt since seven years old. However, he did mention that dolphins were not usually targeted, and the hunting was for food only. Kristian Peterson is now 41 years old, and he is among several whaling supporters who disagree with how this year’s whale hunt went on. He explained that there were errors in the whaling process, and there were not enough people on the beach to kill the ambushed dolphins. That meant that the dolphins suffered on the beach as they waited powerlessly to be killed.
The Faroese government has regulations and guidelines involving this tradition. It appears that some of those who were involved in the dolphin massacre did not have licenses to participate. However, a government spokesperson declared, for the same source, that the whaling event was authorized and no breaches of regulations were discovered. The dolphins were distributed to the local community to be consumed as food.