Whaling cruise scare: Ambassador cruise line apologizes after passengers witness slaughter of 78 dolphins while docking in Faroe Islands
The ship Ambassador Ambition was docking in the Faroe Islands on Sunday and passengers could only sit back and watch as residents killed 78 dolphins** WARNING: DISTURBING CONTENT **
A British cruise ship operator has apologized after a ship docked in the Faroe Islands tolerated the ‘traditional’ killing of 78 dolphins by residents.
Ambitious passengers on board can only look on in horror as the ship docks in the capital in the middle of a bloody summer hunt.
Ambassador Cruise Line took to Twitter to issue a full apology and voice their objections to the ‘outdated practice’ of whaling.
Ambassador CEO Christian Verhounig said: ‘We are extremely disappointed that this has happened after weeks of trying to open a constructive dialogue with the Faroese government and to meet with the Faroese on this matter.
‘We continue to educate our guests and crew not to buy or eat any whale or dolphin meat and to stand against any profit from commercial whaling and dolphin hunting.’
The picture shows a whale, beached and slaughtered for food by residents of the Faroe Islands
Ambassador Ambience, another cruise ship owned by the operator. Ambition docked in the Faroe Islands on Sunday, only for passengers to watch a local whaling exercise.
The cruise line formally apologized to passengers and objected to the practice on Twitter
On Twitter, a statement read: ‘The Ambassador can confirm that today’s arrival of Ambition in Tórshavn, Faroe Islands coincides with the end of 40+ pilot whaling in the port area.
‘We are incredibly disappointed that this victim happened while our ship was in port.
‘We strongly object to this outdated practice, and are working with our partner, ORCA, a charity dedicated to the study and protection of whales, dolphins and porpoises in UK and European waters, to encourage change from 2021.
‘Sustainability is one of Ambassador Cruise Line’s core values, and we fully appreciate that witnessing this local event will be distressing for most guests on board.
‘Accordingly, we sincerely apologize to them for any unnecessary inconvenience.’
Seventy long-finned pilot whales died near Torshavn on Sunday, according to Yahoo News Australia.
Rob Reid, COO of the Captain Paul Watson Foundation UK, said cruise companies should boycott the Faroe Islands altogether if they really wanted to pressure them to end whaling practices.
‘Cruise companies need to take a stand in support of marine wildlife and remove the Faroe Islands from itineraries.
‘Their continued visits to the Faroe Islands inadvertently support the despicable practice of grindadrap.’
Grindarap rears various whales and dolphins in shallow bays where they are beached, killed and butchered.
The ‘tradition’ goes back 1,100 years, with many islanders identifying the practice as part of their cultural heritage.
Island authorities now regulate the practice and require training of participants.
Visitors flock to watch traditional whaling practices off the coast of the Faroe Islands
The practice is culturally significant to many locals, with records dating back to 900 CE
Since the use of harpoons and spears is prohibited, whales are landed and killed in front of spectators.
A beached whale would have its dorsal fin cut off, its spine severed, and the arteries opened, causing copious amounts of blood to spill across the beach and into the ocean.
The meat and blubber of the animals are then used as food, and the blubber can also be processed for medicinal use.
In recent decades, research has highlighted the health problems associated with eating whales due to ocean pollution.