Running counter to the news earlier this year from Iceland, when the fisheries minister announced that whaling there made no economic sense and raising hopes worldwide that it would at long last cease by the end of 2023, two whaling enterprises have now stepped up to say that they will indeed kill whales this year.
About a month ago the whaling company Hvalur hf. announced its plans to resume whaling this summer, after a three-year break. This company owns large purpose-built whaling vessels and targets fin whales, the second largest animal species. Fin whaling is planned to begin in June and to continue until September.
Now, another Icelandic whaler, who specialises in catching minke whales, one of the smallest of the baleen whale species has said that he too will resume whale killing. He took just one individual last year and was the only whaler actively hunting. No other minke whales have been caught since 2018. He also uses his boat, which has a harpoon gun mounted on the bow, for fishing.
This move by Icelandic whalers certainly signals their intention to build up pressure on their government to manifest the continuation of whaling. OceanCare hopes that those in Iceland who oppose this cruel and unnecessary hunting will continue to speak out against it and that the country’s politicians will live up to their indication that it will be banned. For more information about Icelandic whaling please see this recent commentary.
Photo: Evelyne Gasser