From the 1st of July through November 15, 80,000 Cape fur pups, still dependent on the teat, will be beaten to death with pick handles for their fur pelts.
A further 6,000 adult bull seals will be shot at point blank range so that their penises can be used to make ineffective sex potions for the Asian markets, thus fueling an illegal trade in animal body parts for fake medicines.
Each year, despite massive international criticism, flawed science, mounting public outcry, and warnings from the IUCN, the quota gets increased.
For the next 139 days, terrified pups will be rounded up, separated from their mothers and be violently beaten to death. The colony will be rounded up at daybreak. Pups, bulls, and cows will be surrounded and kept away from the safety of the sea. Men with clubs move in y the seals run in fear.
To kill the animal, the men need to administer a swift blow to the head. This is supposed to cause the cranium to disintegrate. This initial strike is seldom sufficient to kill the animal and, as it tries to take evasive action, it is repeatedly beaten until it is either dead or unconscious.
The sealer then stabs the little ones in the throat, sometimes while they are still alive. The baby seals are known to become so terrified that they will vomit their mother’s milk.
The sand on the beach is stained pink from all the blood. Carcasses are hurled onto the backs of waiting vehicles and the bulldozers set to work cleaning yo the blood before the tourists arrive to view the colony.
The Cape fur seal is listed on Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). This means that they are not threatened with extinction, but their survival is dependent on conservation. They have a natural mortality rate of around 30 percent with the few weeks of being born.
Loss habitat, the fishing industry, disease, and starvation are major threats to these animals. Between 1994 and 2000 some 300 thousand seals died for starvation.
Namibian authorities say the cull is necessary because of the burgeoning and unsustainable seal population which threatens the fishing industry.
Namibia’s seal hunt is responsible for the largest slaughter of marine mammals on Earth and is considered to be the most brutal of all seal culls.
The cull occurs en Cape Cross Seal Reserve. The reserve is the home of one of the largest colonies of Cape Fur seals in the world.
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