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Old 26 April 2009, 06:20 PM
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Bear Baby seals painted red by PETA; bears ate them

Comment: I have often heard about an occurrence where the organization
Peta, in order to discourage hunters from killing baby seals for their
pelts, painted them with red paint (in order to ruin the pelt). The
immediate downside being that the polar bears could now easily spot the
little beasts and had the same effect on their population that hunters
would have.

I've gone hunting for some proof on the subject, but am bombarded with a
million articles about Peta's attempt to reach people through WoW by
making a quest to take out some seal killers.

Is there any truth to the paint thing?
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  #2  
Old 26 April 2009, 06:45 PM
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I just now realized this may be a UL, because I've never seen it in official Greenpace literature, but when I was in college everyone "knew" that Greenpace took its name from the green dye it used to dye baby harp seal fur. Greenpeace's own website (http://www.greenpeace.org/internatio...harp-seal-hunt) shows a worked spraying green dye on a baby harp seal, so that Greenpeace uses green dye is true, and if Polar bears have vision similar to most carnivores, they would not see green well against ice and snow. Red, they probably would see much better, so that would be a bad choice of color, if the dying did happen, but most carnivores relay mostly on movement to see prey, which is why bears can fish do well.

I actually have no idea where Greenpeace got its name.
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Old 26 April 2009, 07:20 PM
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According to Greenpeace literature, the name has to do with the peace sign, and being "Green".

But to the OP, I have never heard of seals painted red, but I've know about the green painted harp seals since the 1970's
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  #4  
Old 26 April 2009, 11:02 PM
Mycroft Mycroft is offline
 
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I would doubt the OP, as the beaches that seals choose as nurseries are not easily accessible to land predators (and although Polar Bears can swim, they do not swim by choice). Also although Polar Bears do use vision for hunting, they predominantly use scent, so the colour of the prey would not be a significant factor.
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Old 27 April 2009, 12:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post

Is there any truth to the paint thing?
Some. Greenpeace had the idea of painting seal pups during their early protests against the Newfoundland cull - the late Bob Hunter described it in his book 'The Greenpeace Chronicles' which is now, I think, out of print.

I lost my own copy years ago but, iirc, Paul Watson was involved (it might even have been his idea) - This was before he was expelled from Greenpeace and formed Sea Shepherd.

I don't remember if any seals acually got painted. I don't think so - Oh, and (again, iirc) the paint they were going to use was purple.

Last edited by High Eight; 27 April 2009 at 12:39 AM.
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  #6  
Old 27 April 2009, 03:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by High Eight View Post
I don't remember if any seals acually got painted. I don't think so - Oh, and (again, iirc) the paint they were going to use was purple.
Your memory is mistaken. It was the polar bears they were going to paint purple, until they realized that it might result in them being re-named "Purple People Eaters" thereby labeling them man-killers and more likely to be hunted to extermination.
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Old 27 April 2009, 03:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ASL View Post
Your memory is mistaken. It was the polar bears they were going to paint purple, until they realized that it might result in them being re-named "Purple People Eaters" thereby labeling them man-killers and more likely to be hunted to extermination.
At least they would be better than the current crop of Minnesota Vikings players!

*runs away*
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Old 27 April 2009, 05:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Comment: I have often heard about an occurrence where the organization
Peta, in order to discourage hunters from killing baby seals for their
pelts, painted them with red paint (in order to ruin the pelt). The
immediate downside being that the polar bears could now easily spot the
little beasts and had the same effect on their population that hunters
would have.
The red paint wasn't the problem it was the big white bullseye they painted on the seals butts.

Okay...
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  #9  
Old 07 May 2009, 10:40 AM
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I thought bears were colour blind? If so, red would look dark grey to them, so I doubt that this is true.
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