Namibia is the only country worldwide that still slaughters baby seals for their pelts. http://www.facebook.com/StopNamibianSealSlaughter Wildlife conservation group Sea Shepherd Conservation Society recently went to Namibia to try to stop this inhumane killing of baby seals, which takes place on a seal reserve. Seal culling violates Namibia’s own Animal Protection and Marine Resources Act.
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Each year up to 85,000 baby seals are killed in Namibia to make just a few dollars from their furs.
Terrified pups are rounded up, separated from their mothers, and violently beaten to death. An additional 6000 bull seals are killed for their genitalia (thought to be an aphrodisiac in some cultures.) Most of this is exported ultimately to Asia.
At 6 am, the clubbing begins. Then, at 9 am each morning, bulldozers clean up and restore the beach before the tourists arrive to view the colony, because all of this happens in a designated seal reserve.
Namibia is the only country in the Cape fur seal’s range in which commercial hunting is permitted. Sealing occurs on two mainland colonies, Cape Cross and Wolf/Atlas Bay on the DeBeers company property, where 75 percent of the pups are born.
From July 1 through Nov 15, commercial hunters hire approximately 160 part-time workers to kill the seals, most pups between the ages of 7 and 11 months.
The Namibian government defends its industry claiming seals consume about 700,000 metric tons of fish a year and must be killed. When commercial sealing was ended in South Africa in the 1990’s, the fishing industry was not impacted negatively, but rather, it was improved.
Namibia plans to increase the size of its annual seal cull next year in an effort to create jobs.
Baby seal pups are clubbed, then often alive when stabbed in the heart and skinned alive.
Clubbing begins when the seal pups are just seven months old, still little babies, and very much dependent on their mothers. Both Canada and Russia stopped and banned the practice of killing seal pups still nursing or less than one year of age.
The European Union (EU) last year banned all imports of seal products due to cruelty. Total import bans on all seal products are now also in effect in the US, Mexico and South Africa – for a total of 27 countries.
The Namibian SPCA, that has the legal powers and mandate to prevent cruelty and end the ‘cull,’ have actually condoned the violent fatal beating of 85,000 baby seal pups.
Seal culling violates Namibia’s own Animal Protection and Marine Resources Act.
The hunt in Namibia is now the largest commercial seal hunt in the world, and does not comply with international protecting marine mammals.
The cull occurs in Cape Cross Seal Reserve. The reserve is the home of one of the largest colonies of Cape Fur Seals in the world. Reserve implies seals are protected – they are not.
Currently, the official Ombudsman for Namibia, John Walters, is carrying out an independent investigation into allegations that the seal harvest is breaking a variety of rules and regulations, both under the Exploitation of Marine Resources, and under cruelty laws.