A friend a work accidentally called the painting The Pickler instead of Picker. I had previously sort of imagined him picking them like, but soon as she said pickler I immediately thought about him first picking them then placing them into jars to be pickled.
They are necessarily to be eaten, but maybe just preserved. Maybe he is somesort of conservationist and is saving them from extinction and once pickled, they can be re-released.
Or maybe narwhal is super tasty.