This afternoon, to the visitors’ center of Schiermonnikoog.
It includes one sea water aquarium, and one fresh water aquarium.
In the fresh water aquarium, snails, rudd, and sticklebacks.
Part of the exhibits is about the whaling history of Schiermonnikoog. In the seventeenth-eighteenth centuries, Dutch whalers, including from Schiermonnikoog, went to the Arctic. The whales there were nearly hunted to extinction, and Dutch whaling died.
In the twentieth century, it became technically possible to hunt the fast rorqual whales of the Antarctic. After the hungry years of the Second World War, Dutch whaling started again, this time in the Antarctic. Many sailors in the whaling crews were from Schiermonnikoog.
According to an old Schiermonnikoog whaler, Tjibbe Talsma, present in the center today, starting whaling again fitted in a pattern of thought of the late 1940s-1950s: many people were hungry, and Unilever could make profits using whales for margarine and soap. He had worked for years, first on the big Dutch whaling factory ship Willem Barendsz, hauling inside blue and other big whales.
Later, he worked on a smaller catcher ship. In the 1960s, Dutch whaling stopped again, as Antarctic whaling stocks went down rapidly.
As for whaling today, as practiced by Japan and Norway, Mr Talsma considered it a big crime.
- Dutch whales beached because of NATO war games? (dearkitty1.wordpress.com)
- Humpback whale beaches on Dutch island (dearkitty1.wordpress.com)
- Japanese whalers issued warning by govt (bigpondnews.com)
- Anti-whaling group to keep clear of ships (nzherald.co.nz)
- Japanese whaling fleet leaves port (abc.net.au)
- There Are Whales Alive Today Who Were Born Before Moby Dick Was Written (blogs.smithsonianmag.com)
- Australia won’t monitor Japanese whaling (radionz.co.nz)
- Science or sushi? What we’ve learned from whaling (crikey.com.au)