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LCA Blog

Blog for Last Chance for Animals, an international non-profit dedicated to ending animal cruelty and exploitation.

Tell Canada: Stop the Bloody Seal Hunt!

While most of us welcome the end of winter, this time of year is a nightmare for Canadian seals. Every spring, pregnant harp seals flock to Newfoundland and Labrador on the Canadian coast to give birth. Seal hunters capitalize on this beautiful natural pattern to swarm the coast and slaughter defenseless newborn seal pups during Canada’s annual commercial seal hunt. This is the largest slaughter of marine mammals on the planet.

Past reports have shown that 79% of hunters neglected to make sure the seals were unconscious by checking for corneal reflexes after the first clubbing. That means many seals remain conscious as they’re bludgeoned, bled, skinned, and dragged onto dirty boats, leaving vivid trails of blood in the snow.

Hunters massacre thousands of seals every year, despite the dwindling demand for pelts. Data shows prices for seal pelts dropped $64.50 from 2006 to 2013, yet the hunt survives thanks to millions of dollars in Canadian government subsidies that blindly support a dying sealing industry. Among other activities, hunters may use the money to pay for aerial cameras that allow them to find as many seals as possible with minimal effort.

Powerful countries like the United States and the entire European Union stand against seal slaughter by banning trade on goods procured from commercial seal hunts. Still, the Canadian government spends time and money supporting commercial seal hunting – even though a ban would not kill coastal economies, as the government claims.

The profitable whale watching industry sprung from a similar situation in the 1970s, when Canadian whale hunting was banned.  Experts believe the Canadian government could escape economic damage by shifting funds from the hunt to ecotourism initiatives. The millions who speak out against seal hunting every year could easily become millions of tourists, eager for a glimpse of the captivating harp seal.

Please join the voices that stand against seal hunting by sending an email to the Media Relations team of the Newfoundland and Labrador division of Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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