Blog Tags: Shark Bycatch
It’s estimated that tens of millions of sharks die from incidentally being caught in fishing gear each year—more commonly known as bycatch—from longlines, trawls, and gillnets. Commercial pelagic longlines are particularly dangerous, dangling thousands of baited hooks into the water for extended periods of time, typically intending to catch swordfish, mackerel, and tuna.
- New research shows that deep-sea microbes use vitamin B12 to break down toxic chemicals on the seafloor. Scientists that found microbes using this vitamin reduced the toxicity of dangerous polychlorinated biphenyals (PCBs), dioxins, and other dangerous substances. Forbes
Ocean Roundup: Crabs Found to Look Out for Corals, 35,000 Walruses Gather on Alaskan Beach, and More
- New research shows that some coral may have natural “crab guards” that help them fight off predatory sea stars. Researchers found that coral off the island of Moorea in French Polynesia have a symbiotic relationship with these crabs, offering them shelter and nutrition in exchange for protection. Smithsonian
In honor of Shark Week, Oceana is taking a look at one of the biggest issues facing sharks today: bycatch, or the unintentional catch of non-target fish and other marine life. It occurs in multiple fishing gear types and occurs in fisheries throughout the world. Fortunately, this is a reversible situation that can be overcome with collaboration between fishermen and policy makers.
In April, Oceana in Chile urged Chile’s Secretary of Fisheries Raúl Súnico to protect sharks that are being adversely affected by the nation's fishing operations. Oceana aimed their efforts at the swordfish fishing industry, which has particularly high levels of shark bycatch. To raise awareness about the issue, Oceana aired a three-minute segment on a Chilean news broadcast – and reached an estimated 2 million viewers. Check out this recent article by SOS—Save Our Species that highlights our Chilean office’s shark conservation efforts:
- Ocean Roundup: Chevron Withdraws Drilling Plans from the Arctic, Peru Issues Ban on Shrimp Fishing, and More Posted Fri, December 19, 2014
- Ocean Roundup: Humpback Whales Communicate to Feed at Night, Bangladesh Oil Spill Threatening Sundarbans Mangroves, and More Posted Wed, December 17, 2014
- Holiday Creature Feature: Christmas Tree Worm and Candy Cane Shrimp Posted Fri, December 19, 2014
- Ocean Roundup: Filefish Use Chemical Scent to Camouflage, Bangladesh Oil Spill Threatening Endangered Dolphins, and More Posted Mon, December 15, 2014
- Act: GrubHub, Take Shark Fin Off the Menu! Posted Wed, December 17, 2014