About 1,428 dolphins have been brutally slaughtered in a record catch leaving the coast soaked with blood in the Faroe Islands, a Danish territory located between Iceland and Norway, on Sunday, Sept. 12.

The hunters reportedly used jet-skis and small boats to corral the pod of white-sided dolphins into shallow waters at Skalabotnur beach in Eysturoy, where they were killed with knives. The dolphins' carcasses were then pulled ashore and distributed to locals for consumption, Daily News reported.

According to Bjarni Mikkelsen, a marine biologist from the Faroe Islands, this was the largest number of dolphins ever killed on one day in the Faroe Islands. He said that the previous record was 1,200 in 1940, followed by 900 in 1879, 856 in 1873, and 854 in 1938.

Olavur Sjurdarberg, the chairman of the Faroese Whalers Association, said that the hunters mistakenly thought that the pod was much smaller.

"It was a big mistake," he said. "When the pod was found, they estimated it to be only 200 dolphins."

He said that the hunters realized the true size of the pod only after they started the killing process.

"Somebody should have known better," he said. "Most people are in shock about what happened."

The catch was reportedly approved by the local authorities and no laws were broken in the process. To take part in the killings, hunters must have an official training certificate that qualifies them to kill the marine animals, BBC reported.

The tradition is reportedly known as the grind or Grindadrap in Faroese, which involves the hunting of sea mammals, primarily whales. The citizens of the Faroe Islands have been practicing the tradition for hundreds of years. After the hunt, the yield is freely distributed to the residents.

The incident on Sunday has drawn both local and international outrage.

“It’s an absolute disgrace,” Dominic Dyer, an animal welfare activist said. “And Denmark needs to be held accountable for this... It’s disgusting. It shames the world.”

A public survey conducted after the incident reportedly suggested that most people are opposed to the mass slaughter of dolphins in the Faroe Islands.

"We did a quick poll yesterday asking whether we should continue to kill these dolphins. Just over 50% said no, and just over 30% said yes," Trondur Olsen, a journalist for Faroese public broadcaster Kringvarp Foroya said.

Representation image. Pixabay

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