Barrow lands fifth whale of the season

Posted: Monday, June 03, 2002

BARROW (AP) -- Barrow whalers landed their fifth whale of the spring whaling season last week.

The whaling crews spent a long night towing the massive, 50-foot whale back to camp Thursday, fighing a strong current that was pulling the whale offshore.

The harvest came one week after the International Whaling Commission chose not to renew the Alaska Eskimo subsistence whaling quota for the next five years.

The United States had asked the commission for permission to allow Alaska Natives to hunt 55 bowhead whales over five years.

''I'm really happy that we have the chance to feed our community,'' said Tad Reich, who harpooned the whale. ''I just hope the International Whaling Commission can understand our point of view, that we can't live without this. It's our way of life and it has been for generations.''

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