Whaling in Iceland. Wheres the argument?

For ‘scientific purposes’ huh? If they know how many fish the whales are eating why do they need to study how many fish the whales are eating?

Simple math

380,000(mink whales worldwide) : 6,312,887,493 (humans worldwide) = .0061% as many mink whales as humans.

Now does this really seem necessary? I dont see an argument.

The Japanese are also allowed to kill whales for scientific purposes. One study had the rationale of determining if whales were really going extinct. One has to savor the irony of that.

Different societal norms. The US allows certain Native Amercan tribes (or at least one tribe) to hunt a limmited number of whales. Apparently, it depends on your perspective.

Frankly, though, I’m more concerned about the “bush meat” trade in Africa which is reducuing the number of great apes (especially chimps and bonobos) considerably.

I find the whole situation and the attitudes of all the countries involved disgusting. I’ve never been that strong of an environmentalist, but in my lifetime I’ve witnessed the ocean turn into a near ghostland thanks almost completely to a few countries that refuse to care about the implications of their actions- especially when the implications involve the entire world- not just themselves. I hate to critisize entire countries, but the actions of their governments (and sadly a lack of action by their people) shows a arrogent irresponsibility that inflames my anger.

We’ve seen a long list of species fished out of existance. When one runs out they simply move on to another species. I don’t know what they plan to do when the oceans are finally completly emtpy. But it’s the whole entire god damned world that will have to pay for their little habits when it’s all said and done, and that sucks for us that are at least trying to be a bit responsible for our planet.

The argument is that the Icelanders, Norwegians and Japanese have been hunting whales for centuries for food. The meat is an important part of traditional cuisine, and the profession/industry an integral part of society. They also argue that many species of whales are no longer endangered (which I suppose is debatable).

By the way, it wasn’t those nations that drove the whales to near-extinction. It was the commercial whaling in the 19th century, of which Britain and the US were major players. Those whales were hunted only for the blubber, the main source of fuel at the time, and the meat thrown away. This is a big reason why current whaling nations are upset that the US and UK are now telling them to stop it.

Nobody is making that argument though. They are saying its for scientific, not cultural purposes.

I dont think a finger pointing game works well here. It certainly doesnt do much good for the whales.

The current whaling nations can’t use 200 year old points in their arguments - this is an issue that is here and now.

I wasn’t trying to debate on behalf of the whaling nations, I was just pointing out the emotional factors involved in the issue.

Iceland wants to continue whaling for the reasons I stated, for cultural and economic reasons. The current agreements allow for a certain amount of research whaling, so they are using that as an excuse/loophole. Japan does the same thing.

Er… except that the great apes don’t live in Africa. They live in South America. It’s the old world monkies that live in Africa. Don’t blame our monkey-eating friends in the Sudan or wherever for eating your cute little chimpanze- that’s being done by people in Brazil.


Your joking right? You really don’t believe that Chimps are native to South America. Great Apes live in the Old World ie Chimps/Bonobos/Gorillas in Africa
Orangutans in Asia.

As Dalchini points out, there are no apes, great or otherwise, native to the Americas. From Encyclopedia.com:

Dalchini and Papermache Prince, you both have overlooked the Sasquatch which many believe to be an ape like animal.

This creature has indeed been observed on the North American continent and is assumed to be native to the region in which it has been detected.

So much for the Africa, Asia only argument!

Your joking, right?..right?



I thought the subject was whales. Man, talk about your hijacks.

They’ll be debating Bison/Buffalo next.

It is illogical to hunt a species to extinction. :wink:

I have sent complimentary Ritalin to help all the threadjackers with their Attention Deficit Disorder.

Next time if you want to discuss the price of beans in china, make a thread about the price of beans in china.

Could you make similar calculations for all other animals hunted by western nations so we could compere?

And just because a newspaper gives a number without saying anything about the accuracy doesn’t mean that there aren’t any.

The sources I used are all very credible. The Washington Post (Newsweek), National Geographic, and the US Census.

This information falls under the category of “doesn’t need to be verified” If you think your reading something that is false you need to check it out for yourself. We are all very aware of the credibility of information online. So much so that it doesnt need to be randomly stated.

You really can’t compare whales to all other animals hunted by western nations. For one they are the biggest mammal on earth and two they are basically the only mammal hunted in the sea (i.e. dolphin safe tuna)

If you want statistics on how many deer are on the planet, again, google.

sigh thought he could get more creative responses out of people

As being from a family from a place (Faeroe Islands) that have often been decried for the very occasional traditional pilot whale (not endangered) hunting I have a very negative view of these so-called environment groups (a la Greenpeace)

I find that some groups have elevated whales to a near mystical level. If the whale species being hunted is in no danger of extinction I see nothing inherent wrong about hunting them. We’re not talking about angles or unicorns, but a mammal no better or worse than the cow you had for supper just this evening. This is a condemnation being driven no so much by scientifically facts as by emotions.


Also from Washington Times
“The government says its proposed program of scientific-research whaling is necessary to gauge the effect of whale herds on fisheries stocks and provide data on the mammals’ migration patterns and population trends.”

They’re killing a few whales; 250 I think. There’s a lot of controversy about population size, trends, etc. They’re doing research. They’re not endangering the species. What’s the big problem?

  • Rune

Actually mine was from the Washington Post, not Times :slight_smile:

I can almost see your logic on the comparison to cows for meat, but this is not an animal that we can breed as livestock. We can’t exactly run the worlds Mcdonalds using whale meat. Once they are near extinct the chances of reintroducing them to the worlds oceans from Shamoo at sea world is pretty slim eh?

I note that they are no where near extinct levels, but I also note that the number isn’t exactly large when you look at a ratios of (percent of world ocean):(percent of world land) and then as above whales to humans.

Better to stop the problem before it is a problem. Should we hunt them until they are almost extinct and then deal with the issue?


  1. For one they are the biggest mammal on earth**
    Disregarding the fact that whales come in all kinds of sizes, from dolphin size to blue whale size, is that really a serious argument? Don’t kill them – they’re big!

2) and two they are basically the only mammal hunted in the sea (i.e. dolphin safe tuna)

Hmm… Just off my head I think I can come up with a few others (seals) – not that it makes any difference. Even if they were the only sea mammal, why should that elevate them to a unique category of untouchables – if they’re not being drive to extinction?

  • Rune

oh! Bugger that! :smack:

Strange accounting. Many, many species have low ration of species / humans and species / ocean, land. This does not make them endangered.

Strawman. No we should not, we should cull them and live off the surplus like for any other kind of animal on this planet.

  • Rune