From: SEAL ALERT-SA
Date: June 18, 2007

The BIG Namibian Baby Sealing Industry LIE - 2007
- with pic comparison

 
Press Release : June 18, 2007

13 days to go to the Namibian Baby Seal Slaughter.
Please See: comparitive Pics Below.
Please Cross Post

The BIG Namibian 
Baby Sealing Industry LIE - 2007

Cape Fur Seals

 
      Since Namibia's independence in 1990, where its sealing industry was non-existent. Namibia, has since relied on six falsehoods in order to carry out its annual seal cull, 90% of which is baby seal pup based and operated by three sealing concessionaires. A practice condemned worldwide. For evil to flourish, all that is needed is for good people to do nothing.
 
      FALSEHOOD No #1 - The Seal Population needs to be culled (reduced).
      Namibia relies on the fact that sealers almost caused the complete extinction of Cape fur seals by 1900, and as such any growth above zero, can and is considered an over-population (even Canada with 5-times the number of seals does not lay claim to this falsehood). The highest the Cape fur seal population reached was in 1993 (That was fourteen years ago). The following year, half the population starved to death and died. Six known subsequent mass die-off's occurred thereafter, the last being, last year (2006). Reducing the seal population overall by at least 50%.Where Namibia's own researchers concluded that pups had only been growing at 10% of their normal growth rate, and none were expected to reach post-weaning age. The primary cause of this is the accepted disastrous overfishing policy, which has lead to the collapse of one of the world's most productive fisheries. Promises on its recovery as far back as 1996, have failed to materialise.
 
      Namibia itself acknowledged prior to the start of the 2006 sealing season, that since 1994, twelve years later, the seal population is still some 27% below that of the population recorded in 1993. In reality, the Seal population is some 50% below what it was 12 years later.
 
      FALSEHOOD No #2 - Its a Harvest and not a Cull.
      The Cape fur seals have never been harvested or hunted. It has always been a Cull of Baby Seals. Scientifically a cull is used to "manage" a population by reducing it. Yet,  the most obvious group to cull, the breeding cows has always been exempt, (as no commercial market exists to fund their slaughter). 90% of the annual sealing quota has always been "baby" pup based. Whose removal has no immediate or direct effect on reducing the population in that sealing year, or for years to come or any benefit to fisheries as all are still suckling mothers milk, and are not fish consumers.
 
      In fact, there is no need for a cull of anysort. Already the seals have endured seven mass die-off's. Add this to collapsed fish stocks since 1994, a natural mortality exceeding 30% per year, global warming etc.
 
      FALSEHOOD No #3 - Sustainable Utilisation of Natural Resources is required under the Constitution.
      All wildlife is considered Natural Resources. Namibia does not harvest other marine mammals (whales, dolphins), nor white sharks, seabirds, turtles (all consumers of fish). With the seal population still 27% below its 1993 level, no "sustainable utilisation" is possible, until a full recovery. One sealing colony, lies within a Marine Protected Reserve (Cape Cross) where even fishing is banned.
 
      Scientifically a sustainable utilisation of the seal population should only involve 30% of the pups born (as 30% dies from natural causes within first year). In 1993, the quota was 30 000 pups. In 2006, with the population 27% lower, it was 85 000 pups.
 
      FALSEHOOD No #4 - Seals consume 1 million tons of Fish.
      Worldwide seabirds consume 100 million tons of fish. Collectively Namibia's 32 species of seabird, consume collectively more fish than seals. To which no seabirds are culled, nor are the unknown dolphin, whale or shark populations consumption known. In fact the cow and the chicken, is today the largest predator of marine fish, followed closely by the domestic cat. More than 50% of a seal diet, consists of non-commercial fish species.
 
     Scientifically no study has proven a cull of seals improves fish stocks. To the contrary, studies by Marine Scientists in South Africa have proven fish stocks will decline further, particularly in the hake section (the most profitable), if seals are removed.
 
     FALSEHOOD No #5 - Seals are Thriving.
     Although 75% of the seals now occur on two large mainland colonies. This is not representative of an increasing seal population. These are seals displaced from some 30-odd natural offshore island colonies (Ichaboe and Mercury). 99% of the Cape fur seals former island colonies remains extinct.
 
     FALSEHOOD No #6 - Namibia's Sealing Industry is Legal and Accepted Internationally.

     Sealing on seals in their natural habitat (islands) causes direct extinction. A Crime Against Nature. Likewise, is any disturbance to their breeding behaviour. Namibia's sealing quota, which starts in July, is 90% pup based. Its method is to invade these seal breeding nurseries (75% of the population), separate cow from pup, and to club its nursing young for 139 days until start of the next mating season. It is for this reason, the US stopped and banned all imports in 1971. Europe banned imports of baby seal products, likewise in 1983 (Baby Cape fur seal products were excluded because EU was not aware of this cull). Sealing countries of Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia banned the practice in their regulations in 1987. Recently EU has been considering a total seal product import ban. Many countries like, Italy, Croatia, Mexico, Germany and Netherlands have recently introduced bans already.

Namibia                                        South Africa
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Whilst you ban them from natural islands
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- We rescue those washed ashore and take them back
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Whilst your overfishing policies causes mass starvation
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- We purchase fish and feed them
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Whilst you let them suffer and starve to death, and bury them in mass graves
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- We rescue them and save their life
 
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Whilst you brutally take their young lives
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- We love and nurture them
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Whilst you plunge knives into their baby hearts
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- They suckle our ears
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Whilst you round them up to slaughter
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- They surround us in friendship
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Whilst you use guns, knives and clubs to kill them
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- We use knives to free them from their fishing line entanglement
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Whilst you smash in their heads
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- They fall asleep to our heart-beat
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Whilst you point silencers at their snout
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- They nuzzle their snouts to our nose
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Whilst you toss their clubbed bodies like garbage
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- We remove them from garbage bags and save them
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Whilst you tear the flesh from their innocent bodies
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- They use their living coats to give us warmth
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Whilst you believe in their extinction
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- We believe in their future
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Whilst you stand around their clubbed corpses
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- we enjoy a thriving multi-million dollar seal-viewing industry
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Whilst you see dollars in their removal
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  - We see dollars in their survival
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Minister of Namibian Fisheries/Abraham Iyambo
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      -        Seal Alert-SA/Francois Hugo
 
       Towards the end of last year's sealing season, Minister Iyambo stated, "If Culling seals is a Problem -The Solution is to Eat Them" (urging his countrymen to develop a taste for seal-meat). Wrong again Minister, even wildlife reject offerred seal-meat.

 
For the Seals
Francois Hugo Seal Alert-SA