Whales are mentioned in the oldest
documented sources and beached whales have always been considered a
great advantage, especially when times were hard.
At the time of settlement, there were probably more whale species
in the ocean around the country than nowadays.
Two are known to have been hunted almost to extinction in the
North Atlantic, the Greenland right whale, and the North Atlantic right
whale. Even the earthĺs
largest mammal, the blue whale, was endangered.
The Basks are said to be the first Europeans to hunt whales.