Denmark’s Faroe Islands Continue Dolphin Slaughter

(Warning: Graphic Images)

The Cove won a well-deserved Oscar (and several other awards) this year for uncovering the slaughter of dolphins in Japan.  While it was being made, another discovery put the Japanese people on notice: the flesh of the dolphins is toxic, highly poisonous due to mercury content from them ingesting mercury-tainted fish.  Similar levels of mercury poisoning have caused horrible birth defects in the past, right there in Japan.  The Cove demonstrates how doing the right thing by other animals on the planet is the right thing for humans as well.

Apparently that message was lost on the people of the Faroe Islands, a holding of Denmark.  Their dolphin and whale slaughter continues.  The consumption of the flesh also continues.  What will it take for an otherwise civilized Western European nation to grow up?

Slaughter.  That’s a strong word… but not strong enough.  How else could one describe these images?

This is a rite of passage?

This is a rite of passage?









And a spectator sport
And a spectator sport










This is the Calderon dolphin's repayment for trusting men and coming near them to interact with fellow sentient beings.

This is the Calderon dolphin's repayment for trusting men and coming near them to interact with fellow sentient beings.










Gaffing Hook in Pilot

The butchery is neither painless nor silent. Dolphins scream out, sounding very much like a human child, as they are sliced and hacked apart while still alive and conscious.










This is not the action of civilized men. This is barbaric and hostile violence towards a peaceful sentient, sapient, and sovereign species.










While the Faroese claim Tradition, does this LOOK like any sort of tradition? Hundreds of powerboats herding the peaceful cetaceans towards their death?









Thousands of people have signed petitions.  The government of Denmark / Faroe Islands ignores them; petitions go unheeded.  It is time that we, citizens of this planet, called upon our own governments to tell Denmark / Faroe Islands that the whales and dolphins they slaughter are not theirs to kill.  It is time that we fought back for the sake of those who cannot speak at our courts.  We must demand that our government put Denmark and the Faroe Islands on notice: We will NOT passively permit you to continue this vulgar practice!  We will place sanctions against you until it stops.  We will not buy or sell with you.  You are shunned, unwelcome, until you stop slaughtering these fellow residents of the earth.

This is our planet, the earth is our mother, and all of the creatures who share it with us are our fellows, brother and sister inhabitants.  It is not ours to do with as we please.  We’re only here borrowing it for a while.  The Calderon dolphins may very well be led to extinction by this killing, and extinct is forever.  They are just one of the species of cetaceans killed by these people.  NO intelligent creature should be treated this way.  Despite claims to the contrary, the Faroese do NOT need to do this to survive.   Please, do all you can to make it stop.

P.S. Apologies to any Danes who feel they are being unjustly singled out, but the fact remains that the Faroe Islands are a territory of Denmark.  If Denmark wants to sever all ties to that territory, we will be glad to change the title of the article.   Until then, the title remains accurate.

PPS: It has been nearly 2 years since this article was written.  We have invited the Faroese into a discussion, and they participated.  When it got circular and there was nothing more to be gained, I ended the discussion.  There have been many comments submitted EVERY DAY about these ongoing horrors.  Many of them are emotional, reactionary, and have at least some of the facts wrong.  But the facts that they’re mistaken about are not foundational; their position isn’t any less right, for example, that they thought Pilot “whales” are endangered, or if they’re called Calderon or something else.    For the past year or so, I’ve censored out many posts that called for violence to the Faroese.   I have just release them all, editing out only the most offensive of them, allowing people’s own words to “speak” for them, for better or worse.

Thanks to all of you for your passion and involvement.  Though the Faroese have turned down offers to supplement their income in lieu of continuing the Grind, it remains our most fervent hope that they will do so of their own will.

Children of the Faroe Islnds, showing no respect for the slaughtered pilot whales.

Children of the Faroe Islands, showing no respect for the slaughtered pilot whales.

Faroese Boys In Bloody Waters








Comments are now closed for this post. I’m taking the liberty of having this last word:

If the Faroe Islands are so horribly barren as you Faroese apologize/defend, that you (Faroese) cannot grow food in hothouses, cannot raise eggs, etc., and the (over)fishing that you’re already doing still cannot support your people, then it is far better to leave that place (or redouble your efforts to grow vegetables in hothouse environments) than to continue killing these sentient, sapient, sovereign beings, just to survive. It’s not 200 years ago anymore. Relocating would be easy enough to do… if it were actually a matter of survival.

There is no good excuse for this… and the powerboats that drive hundreds and thousands to their deaths are NOT part of any tradition, even if tradition were to be given some special importance. (Slavery was a tradition, too.) It is time for the Faroese to end these horrible atrocities, the deaths they bring, and the poor health and shame they heap upon themselves by refusing to do so.

Protect The Ocean

29 January, 2012

598 replies
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  1. Elisabeth Rose says:

    Dear JT,
    What can we do to stop this horrific slaughter? I only just learned about it from a former student. I tried to sign a petition that was on Care2, but the petition was already closed. Please let me know what we can do to get the people of this island to stop the insanity. I could understand if it was a small group of people killing a few animals as their only source of food, and in which they used all parts of the animal, but this is different. This is akin to those hunting places where (for example in France) they release a fox and let people pay to hunt it on horseback, while the poor fox doesn’t stand a chance since the whole area is fenced in. Or other hunting places, like in the US, where people hunt for sport and leave the dead animals to suffer and die. Disgusting and shameful.

    I’m especially saddened by this story because dolphins are the international (or at least Italian) symbol of friendship…. What an irony.

    Again, I’d be grateful to know what we can do, if anything.
    Thanks for your time,
    Elisabeth Rose

  2. Mary says:

    This is absolutely disgusting! I can not believe that in this day and age something this barbaric is still in existence! Furthermore I am ashamed that other governments allow it to happen. I am a patriotic American and velieve that in my country and our troops, but to be completely honest we have invaded countries for a lot less. I cannot fathom the idea that our government has done nothing to stop this.

  3. renee says:

    this makes me want to cry. ive never even been fortunate enough to lay eyes on an actual dolphin let alone play with one. These people take advantage of their curious playful nature and kill them or fun?? i cant wrap my head around this.. its horrible.

  4. chernesto says:

    when does this happen? what date is the slaughter set to happen? and is this island easily accessible. and end must come to this.

  5. Chris says:

    I don’t think just stopping it is enough, and no matter how hypocritical it is, people like that don’t deserve to exist.

  6. ashley says:

    i couldnt even get past 5mintues without wanting to vomit. thats murder. plain and simple. dolphins are friendly by nature they cant help it, yet those “people” if thats what you could even call them murder those poor animals for fun? yeah cause that sounds like a good time. not………it honestly makes me sick thinking, those little kids were watching and seemed to be enjoying themselves! i would never want my kids to see that thats for sure. i just cant believe this is what the world has come to these days.

  7. Olivia Ramirez says:

    WTF is wrong with these people??? These are innocent creatures and they are just gonna do that to them? This literally brought tears to my eyes! I’m disgusted by these people they think they can do this to become a man? They must have lost their mind! I’ll show u a man…. Kicking their A$$! this breaker my heart to see this done to these dolphins…. These are beautiful creatures!! Karma is gonna get them for sure and she isn’t gonna be pretty! What’s gonna happen when they run out of dolphins and whales? They’ll be sorry one day and hope it’s soon! They shouldn’t be alive at all for doing that! I can’t believe that they think this is a sport….. So much freaking hate toward them… So much!

  8. Pj says:

    Just because YOU think it’s immoral doesn’t mean you can project your morals onto these people. To these people this is just a form of nourishment for them. Just like fish or beef is to to other people. Are u going to condemn me for going out on weekends to fish? If the answer is yes then I would love to know what it’s like in your little fantasy world where every living thing is equal. How about you live your life and let these people live theirs.

  9. ckclay84 says:

    I just do not understand why this would ever be ok! I am so disgusted I am at a loss for words about this whole thing. I am not an animal rights activist but I do know when animals are being killed for NO FREAKING reason that it makes me angry and it is NOT ok! This is a very unnecessary display of violence, and it is absolutely disgusting that this is how they show they are becoming adults. If this is what being an adult looks like in that country we should really rethink what we define as adults because this feels a lot more like murderers to me. I was unaware that they were one in the same……..

  10. Jr says:

    the government must take actions of this tradition or else there might be an answer of this brutal massacre of friendly dolphins….the nature will give them punishment of what they did to the innocent dolphins i know that there is a revenge of the nature,,,..they are stupid human how can they sleep every night they are not humans…hopefully they can conclude there mistakes….

  11. Mike says:

    What the hell is the matter with you crazy denmark pieces of shit!? Huh! All of you are fucked up in the head!

  12. Erick says:

    You people need to wake up. Looks to me like they are cutting meat that they are either going to sell or use themselves. How is it any different from ANY other hunting ground? It is NO DIFFERENT from any other type of meat harvesting place. They do similar things with chickens, cows, pigs, fish, crabs, lobsters, turkeys and many other animals. Stop acting like they are just killing for fun and leaving the carcasses to rot. They are actually going to use the these things that they harvest. And lastly, it’s not like we are the only species that does mass killing. Sharks have feeding frenzies and many dog and cat family predators hunt in packs or groups, hunting for the smallest and the weakest targets. Even lobsters rip apart their prey while it is still alive. Killing and eating things that are lower than you on the food chain is the natural order of things. That is how all animals get their energy, and that is how the proper population on this planet is maintained. Yes, they suffer. But so does EVERYTHING ELSE.

    • Tasha says:

      Have you ever heard of vegetarianism? or organic food? or buying products like say from The Body Shop who claim to be against animal testing and all for fair trade?

      There’s always room for hypocrisy yes. But even for meat eaters…these killings go against the natural law and balance of nature. We kill to survive, we kill to eat, we kill or be killed…these are all sufficient reasons. But when the killings are meant for reasons other than this then it’s crossing the line. Brutally torturing or mistreatment of cattle, chicken and the like when they are all doomed for death anyway as our food are also unnecessary acts.

      We as humans have the power to stop such unnecessary cruelty…starting with animals. If we can stop this mistreatment and teach our future generations that it’s not okay to act this way towards any living being…perhaps one day we can also learn to respect each other more…and then there will be no reason for war…I know this will never happen and this is just a fantasy. It just feels good to hope for the best in humanity. Starting with the smaller things always helps with the bigger picture. 🙂

  13. Antero- says:

    How many of you people who furiously critizice this act are vegetarians? It’s a loads of hypocrisy if you are not and still shouting here rights for animals. Please think before shouting out your opinions, and more over, act Iif you think it’s that serious. Commenting in a web page is not much of an acting…

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