In 2012, the Canadian Government authorized the killing of 400,000 Harp Seals for their pelts and meat. This portfolio seeks to break down the psychological barrier and identity that separates us from other intellegent animal species, and encourage further efforts into their preservation.
This portfolio showcases the Harp seals of Canada, as photographed on the ice floes in the Gulf of St. Lawrence during their breeding season. In 2012, the Canadian government authorized 400,000 of these seals to be slaughtered for the purpose of harvesting their pelts and their meat. The methods used to slaughter the Harp seal are quite gruesome and often involve clubbing them on the skull to prevent damage to their pelts. The majority of the slaughtered seals are believed to be 3 months or younger, as this is the age when their white pelts are most commercially viable. The skinning of these seals usually occurs out on the ice, with some reports citing that some of the seals were not dead prior to their being skinned.
This series of images seeks to explore our relationship with intelligent animal life and to increase awareness of their human like qualities in hopes that this will inspire further research and efforts into their preservation. Photographing wildlife that exhibits higher intelligence has been a passion of mine in hopes of reducing the psychological boundaries and identities that we create to separate such creatures from ourselves. I believe we have much to learn from creating a more kindred-like bond with such creatures.
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