^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ J. Michael Williamson Principal Investigator-WhaleNet <http://whale.wheelock.edu> Associate Professor-Science Wheelock College, 200 The Riverway, Boston, MA 02215 voice: 617.734.5200, ext. 256 fax: 617.734.8666, or 617.566.7369 ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ---------- Forwarded message ---------- Date: Tue, 11 Feb 97 12:51:00 GMT From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Canada-Seal Hunt Canada-Seal Hunt By DAVID CRARY Associated Press Writer TORONTO (AP) -- Foes of Canada's annual seal hunt escalated their attack on the industry Monday, releasing undercover video footage showing seals being skinned alive and dragged over the ice with hooks. "The only conclusion one can draw from the film is that the Canadian seal hunt is cruel, criminal and out of control," said Clayton Ruby, a prominent lawyer who joined animal-rights activists at a press conference in Ottawa. The International Fund for Animal Welfare said it obtained the video footage by hiring investigators who posed as photographers for a U.S. hunting magazine. The 10 hours of tape show 144 alleged violations of seal-hunt regulations, the group said. The video footage, coupled with full-page anti-sealing ads placed in major Canadian newspapers Monday, was likely to worsen the dilemma faced by the federal fisheries department. The department risked the wrath of animal-rights activists worldwide whenit boosted the 1996 seal harvest quota by 34 percent, allowing 250,000 harp seals along the Atlantic coast to be killed. Alleged infractions committed during that hunt led to 101 sealers being charged last year with illegally killing and selling protected seal pups. The department says it will study the video to determine whether more charges are warranted. Earle McCurdy, president of Newfoundland's largest fishing union, said the video gives a distorted view of an industry that is no more vicious than others in which animals are killed. But Mary Richardson, who chairs the animal welfare committee of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, said the level of cruelty depicted would not be tolerated at slaughter houses or research labs in Canada. The 1996 seal quota was increased in part to help Newfoundland's battered economy. The province -- Canada's poorest -- was devastated by the collapse of codfish stocks in the early 1990s, and sealing was touted as a way to compensate. "Political considerations have resulted in the (fisheries department) expanding a hunt that it cannot control," said Rick Smith of the International Fund for Animal Welfare.