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105 grindwalas slaughtered during cruelty festival

29 April saw the second Grindadrap in the Faroe Islands this year – the traditional hunt for grindworms. The macabre-looking festival of cruelty took its toll of 105 dead animals, which, when compared with the New Year’s edition of this tradition, makes a total of 175. During the year, the number of hunted grindwhales reaches
Published: May 3, 2019 - 19:12
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 18:08
105 grindwalas slaughtered during cruelty festival

29 April saw the second Grindadrap in the Faroe Islands this year – the traditional hunt for grindworms. The macabre-looking festival of cruelty took its toll of 105 dead animals, which, when compared with the New Year’s edition of this tradition, makes a total of 175. During the year, the number of hunted grindwhales reaches up to 1,000.

The Spring Grindadrap took place in Sandavágur, on the island of Vágar. The grindwhales were spotted at around 7.00 a.m. and, as is usually the case, the boats chased them into the bay, where the slaughter began shortly after 9.00 a.m. Farers, following a tradition that dates back to the 16th century and the Vikings, set out to capture the animals clustered in the water.

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Over the next quarter of an hour, 105 animals were butchered. Officially, everything was done humanely, the animals were killed by cutting through their spinal cord, but considering the conditions under which the slaughter was carried out, this is questionable. The level of brutality is certainly lower than it was a few years ago, after public opinion enforced a ban on the use of hooks and harpoons.

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But slaughter is slaughter, regardless of the tools used. The photographs of this ritual slaughter leave no illusions. Around a hundred mammals chased into shallow water and a group of people methodically butchering them piece by piece and dragging the dead ones ashore. Everything in the blood-red water is a macabre sight.

Farers, of course, have a full list of reasons in their view to justify Grindadrap, but in the 21st century, aren’t these just excuses?

Source: local.fo, jn.fo
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Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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