Seals in Iceland,

The Icelandic Seal Center


Seal view

Boat Seal watching tours
from Hvammstanga

in and around Iceland



Ferries-Car rentals

Altogether seven species of pinnipedia have been spotted in Icelandic waters, the common seal, the grey seal, the ringed seal, the harp seal, the bearded seal, the hooded seal, and the walrus.  The common seal and the grey seal breed all around the country, but the others are vagrants.  Traditionally, the seals have been hunted in Iceland from the time of settlement for their furs and meat.

The annual catch has fluctuated between four and seven thousand during the last decades, and has diminished considerably during the last few years.  The seals were and sometimes still are an issue of debate between the conservationists, fishermen and the fish industry because of their impact on the commercial importance of fish stocks, the damage to fishing gear and their part in the spreading of the cod worm.

The conservationists managed to ruin the economy of the Inuit seal hunters in Greenland and did not hesitate to use falsified film material to do so.  Scientific research clearly shows that the populations of the seal species around Iceland are not endangered.

When oxygen was first produced as a waste product by certain plant cells some three billion years ago, it created a crisis for all other life on earth. Those plants were polluting the environment, exhaling a lethal gas. Earth eventually had an atmosphere incompatible with life. Nevertheless, life on earth took care of itself. In the thinking of the human being a hundred years is a long time. Hundred years ago we didn't have cars, airplanes, computers or vaccines. It was a whole different world, but to the earth, a hundred years is nothing. A million years is nothing. This planet lives and breathes on a much vaster scale. We can't imagine its slow and powerful rhythms, and we haven't got the humility to try. We've been residents here for the blink of an eye. If we're gone tomorrow, the earth will not miss us.
Michael Crichton, "Jurassic Park"

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