Sluggish start to annual seal hunt

Sluggish start to annual seal hunt

By CBC News
CBC News

The largest part of Canada’s seal hunt opened Monday, but on a pessimistic note, as sealers say prices remain too low to turn a profit.

“You just can’t go at something and not make no money,” said Dwight Spence of Port au Choix on Newfoundland’s Northern Peninsula.

Spence, who said fewer than a dozen vessels left his home port this weekend for the hunt, decided to stay home for the fourth season in a row. The hunt opens in much of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and along a sealing area historically known as The Front, off northeastern Newfoundland.

With top-quality pelts fetching only about $21 each – a fraction of what was paid a decade ago – sealers are also up against a European Union challenge, stagnant demand in other markets and spotty ice conditions.

“The prices that’s there now, it’s just not feasible,” Spence told CBC News.

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