The campaigners frequently receive questions related to the actions posted on Care2, and this blog is a good opportunity to occasionally share the responses. Hopefully, it will be of interest to those looking to go deeper into the issues.

For a first outing, we have a question from Naomi about the seal hunt in Canada:

I know very little about seal hunting in Canada, but it is my understanding that, at least in part, this issue is closely tied with treaties and negotiations on aboriginal rights, and that just ending it, or worse declaring culturally different practices unacceptable, would move the problem into a different area of social disresponsiblity.

Can you clarify for me who these demonized seal hunters are?

-Naomi

You ask a great question, but the reality of the seal hunt in Canada is that it is a commercial operation. The allowable catch of harp seals in 2007 was 270,000. That’s well beyond the needs of the aboriginal groups in the area. The commercial quota for hooded seals and grey seals are much lower, but still relatively high. (8,200 hooded seals and 2000 grey seals.)

Canadian Seal HuntAboriginal groups and non-Aboriginal coastal residents who reside north of 53 degrees N latitude can continue to hunt seals for subsistence purposes without a license outside of this limit. And residents adjacent to sealing areas throughout Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec are allowed to hunt up to six seals for their own use.

So really, the big hunt is an entirely commercial operation and done for profit, at least in Canada. The situation in Greenland is a bit different, but that’s a topic for another day.

Sign a petition to stop the seal hunt in Canada at http://go.care2.com/14954663.