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August 06, 2019 - The Vegan Authority

23 Pilot Whales killed in Faroe Islands

23 Pilot Whales killed in Faroe Islands
Credit: Photographer Alessio MesianoFile Photo / © Photabulous!

"Today, again, the sea turned red in the Faroes. They killed a pod of pilot whales. They do that just for having free and local food to be shared with locals. This is a tiny and remote archipelago far away from continents." 

Those are the words, posted by Alessio Mesiano, a vegan, a photographer, in the Faroe Islands, photo-documenting the 23 pilot whales that were killed a ‘grindadráp‘ in the village of Hvalvík just a few days ago.

She chose not to show the actual whale hunt or slaughter, rather just a sea of red. Alessio's response to people saying she is not showing all the gruesome details of the "ferocious island" - is that every country kills animals. Pushing further she suggests if this requires her to take pictures of slaughterhouses in every country she visits.

"This photo is the only thing I’m going to show you. The reason is simple: this is what happens in every slaughterhouse. Now it’s the water that turned red, but this could be the floor of a slaughterhouse, but here in the Faroes there are no walls hiding the facts. Probably we should pretend to open the doors of every slaughterhouse in the world and let people see what happens every day."

Part of the Kingdom of Denmark, the Faroe Islands lie about 655 (407 mi) off the coast of Norther Europe. They comprise of 18 major islands, and 779 islands, islets and skerries in total.

Whaling, a community event, in the Faroe Islands, still occurs to this day. The Faroese have eaten pilot whale meat and blubber since they first settled the islands for centuries. It is estimated, by the government that approximately 100,000 swim close to the Faroe Islands, and the Faroese hunt on average 800 pilot whales annually. The meat and blubber from the hunt is distributed equally among those who have participated.

The recent hunt or grindadráp was live streamed by the Sea Shepherd. They reported that 25 small boats participated in herding the whales towards Hvalvík Beach over a period of 3 hours – but once the grind finally reached its final destination, it took the many locals who had shown up for the occasion only five minutes to kill it.

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