One month after a Northern Quebec community pleaded with authorities to free a pod of orcas trapped by sea ice, a group of similarly trapped belugas has provided an impromptu feast for the people and polar bears of Sanikiluaq, Nunavut.
Hunters came across the belugas last week when they noticed as many as eight polar bears crowded around two holes in the ice no wider than one or two metres apiece.
“Some are still in the breathing hole, but there was about 20 dead belugas on the ice that were killed by the polar bears,” Sanikiluaq hunter Peter Kattuk told a CBC interviewer last Thursday.
Many of the belugas that remained, meanwhile, showed signs of injury from polar bear attack. Others risked suffocation and starvation by jostling for air around the holes.
Speaking with the Iqaluit-based Nunatsiaq News on Monday, Mr. Kattuk said that hunters have been returning to the…
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