More Misinformation About the Seal Hunt

The snow and the ice is starting to form and the termites are starting to come out of the woodwork, what I call the ill-informed bleeding hearts.

I am referring to the seal protest that took place recently in St. John’s.

Renee Gosse, one of the protesters that was interviewed by CBC, was asked why she was protesting the seal hunt. She stated that they were trying to educate the people of this province about the seal hunt, adding it is cruel, wasteful and unnecessary.

I have been hunting and eating seal for more than 70 years. I have watched my grandfather kill pigs, goats, sheep and chickens when they could no longer lay eggs and yes, seals — because if he didn’t we would not have survived.

Killing any animal is not a pretty sight, especially killing seals on white ice, the pan red with blood. Seals are shot with high powered rifles, with the shot aimed at the head, so as not to damage the most valuable part of the seal, the pelt.

Wasteful: the most valuable of the seal is and always will be the pelt. It is a beautiful skin used for clothes, the same as mink, fox, beaver and other animals.

The fat is used in a lot of food products, as well as Omega-3 capsules, for health purposes. I consume eight every day.

As to 95 per cent of the meat being thrown away — that is an outright lie. About 95 per cent of seals killed today are less than a year old and all the flippers are brought ashore and sold, which would account for half of the meat. The rest of the carcass would produce about five pounds of meat after the bones are removed. While not all carcasses are brought ashore, it is put back into the ecosystem to feed other things, the same as a farmer does with the part of the crop that he can’t sell is plowed back into the ground and used as fertilizer for next year’s crop.

Unnecessary: the argument Ms. Gosse used is that the taxpayers subsidise the hunt — that is not true.

It is necessary because we have hunted most things in the ocean, almost to extinction and we have allowed the seals to explode from 2.2 million prior to 1990. Since that time, because of people who are ill-informed and want to impose their values on others, like Ms. Gosse, regardless of the consequence, we have lost the seal markets and the population of seals has exploded to approximately eight to nine million seals.

We have upset the balance of nature in the ocean. All the fish in the ocean have predators that feed on each other and the seal, which no longer has a predator, thanks to the anti-sealing groups, is the biggest predator and will eat whatever it can get.

We need to have a seal hunt to restore the balance of nature to our ocean. Unless the seals are kept in check, our oceans will never be able to produce its full potential.

We need a seal hunt to bring in much needed new money in order for our coastal communities to survive.

Renee Gosse, you have learned nothing about the seal hunt.

Wilfred Bartlett
Green Bay South

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