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Tag archives for fisheries

What Are We Actually Protecting In The Ocean?

One of the great recent success stories in conservation is the rapid increase in the establishment of marine protected areas (MPAs). Since 2006, there has been a staggering growth of 10 million km2 of new MPAs globally, a nearly four-fold increase over the past decade. Yet there has been no baseline for measuring how well our marine species are represented in protected areas. Until now.

A new paper we have published in Nature’s Scientific Reports assesses the overlap of global MPAs with the ranges of 17,348 marine species (fishes, mammals, invertebrates). We have discovered some sobering results: most marine species are not well represented within MPAs and several hundred species are not covered at all.

As Paris Delegates Debate Emissions, Climate Adaptation Is Finding Solutions

While world leaders at the Conference of Parties (COP) meetings in Paris negotiate reductions of global carbon emissions, a number of organizations are already working to implement solutions to the problems those emissions create. Many conservation and development institutions are focused on applied solutions to both the current and future impacts of climate change. Such efforts are helping wildlife and ecosystems adapt to changing climatic conditions.

Seal Pups: Ferociously Cute and Worth Protecting

Fur seal pups may be the cutest creatures in Antarctica—but they can give some serious attitude, as National Geographic grantee and wildlife biologist Douglas Krause finds out when he tries to make sure these animals are as healthy as they are adorable.

A Plea for Adélie (Penguins)

Last week in an obscure stone building in Hobart Tasmania, representatives from 24 nations plus the European Union, sat in stiff dark suits around a large table, making decisions that will determine the fate of one of our great global commons, the Southern Ocean. They discussed proposals for expansive marine protected areas, including in the…

4 Steps to Improve Ocean Conservation Research in Small Island States

To be effective, marine conservation must be based on rigorous and targeted science. The large and growing threats to ocean ecosystems — overfishing, climate change, pollution, and habitat destruction — coupled with the limited scientific capacity of most small island states make science-based management not only an imperative, but also a challenge. Here’s one part…

Fish Spawning Aggregations: an illusion of plenty

Spawning aggregations are massive gatherings of fish for breeding, a behavior shared by many species across the globe in many different habitats. They are predictable because they usually happen at the same place and at the same time each year, and humans have taken advantage of this to harvest large numbers of fish with minimal effort. But as harvesting keeps growing, fish populations keep diminishing.

Wild Fisheries: New Hope for the Blue Economy

By Amanda Leland What is the blue economy? Hundreds of people from around the world are gathered this week in Cascais, Portugal at The Economist’s World Ocean Summit 2015 to answer this question and discuss ways to catalyze growth in this important sector. Historically, capture fisheries have been the leading edge of the blue economy. Communities,…

Mapping Ocean Wealth – Informing a Sustainable Ocean Economy

By Mark Spalding, marine scientist, The Nature Conservancy I’m a somewhat recalcitrant tweeter. I’m not quite sure whether it’s worth the effort, but last month I joined a trending topic, a first for me. I tweeted: #IAmAScientistBecause I want to explain to people how much we all NEED nature. It was honest, but I wondered…

From Laws on Paper to Enforcement on the Water: Sustainable Ocean Management Gets Real in Barbuda

Co-authored by Andy Estep, Science Manager of the Waitt Institute For the first time in the history of Barbuda, law enforcement agents from four agencies gathered in the Codrington Fisheries Complex to collaborate on the enforcement of ocean laws in the island’s waters. This important step will ensure that the community reaps the benefits of new…

Livelihoods, Jobs, and the Illegal Wildlife Trade

By John G. Robinson

The illegal wildlife trade is big business. Not including the illegal trade in timber, it exceeds $19 billion annually. The trade is heavily capitalized and is part of the same criminal networks that are involved in drugs, weapons and human trafficking. While the impacts on wildlife populations – including elephants, tigers, and fish species – are widely known, the effects on human livelihoods, community integrity, income-generating jobs, sustainable development, and national economies are equally pervasive.

An Oysterman Hero in Apalachicola

On day 44, the Glades to Gulf expedition had an opportunity to spend a day with third-generation Apalachicola oysterman, Kendall Schoelles, who gives hope that the oyster fishery and lifestyle can still be saved.

The 2015 Fish 2.0 Competition: A Chance for Seafood Businesses to Build on Investor Interest

Three years ago, when I first started asking investors why they didn’t put more money into seafood ventures, many told me that there just weren’t enough strong businesses out there to warrant the time and energy of adding seafood to their portfolios. At the same time, seafood businesses complained that there were not enough interested…

Exploring Indonesia’s Last of the Wild – the Forgotten Islands

By Stuart Campbell and Nils Krueck

The Forgotten Islands occupy a region in the southeastern Indonesian province of Maluku, a sparsely-populated area covering about 50,000 square kilometers that includes a vast expanse of coral reefs. As the region’s name suggests, not much is known about these reefs and their associated fisheries. One important reason for this is that for much of the year the seas are wild and unable to be accessed. Another reason is that Maluku’s Forgotten Islands support around 70,000 people who practice traditional customs that hark back to before the conversion of communities to Christianity. These customs include the guarding of marine resources against occasional visitors, such as nomadic fishers from central Indonesia

Pacific Leatherback Sea Turtle Conservation Day

Today is Pacific Leatherback Sea Turtle Conservation Day! Today is a day to celebrate conservation achievements and to continue to work for real protections for these critically endangered sea turtles. Pacific Leatherback Sea Turtle Conservation Day was declared by Governor Jerry Brown and signed into law two years ago. Turtle Island Restoration Network led the…

Busting Indonesia’s Manta Gill Trade

Worth up to US$30 million a year, the global trade in manta ray gills depends on the industry traders for its survival. The recent arrest of a major Indonesian trader in manta ray gills marks the first time in the country’s history that anyone has been brought to justice in a case of marine conservation. It’s also proof of the determination of Indonesian authorities to stamp out the killing of one of the country’s most serene and majestic species; one that attracts US$ 140 million dollars every year in global tourism. Text and photos by Paul Hilton.