2008 Canadian Commercial Seal Hunt
Canada's 2008 annual commercial seal hunt in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and around Newfoundland, Quebec and Nova Scotia began on March 28. The hunting season lasts from mid-November to mid-May, but the hunt mainly occurs in March and April. Canada's seal hunt is the world's largest hunt for marine mammals.
Some animal rights groups have been given observer permits and will be monitoring the hunt. They say it is cruel and that it ravages the seal population. Sealers say it is sustainable, humane, and well-managed.
The pelts and oil are sold to buyers in Norway, Russia, and China.
The total allowable catch for 2008 is set by the Canadian government to 275,000 harp seals, (the quota include 2,000 seals for personal seal hunting, and 4,950 seals for the Aboriginal seal hunt,) 8,200 hooded seals and 12,000 grey seals.
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