Ocean News: Drift Nets Kill Cetaceans and A Whale Watching Winter

By February 6, 2012 Ocean News
Shark caught in a drift net

Help Us stop Drift Nets

Drift Nets kill whales, dolphins, and sharks and climate change allows people to watch humpback whales in the winter.

Shark caught in a drift netThe Black Fish , an organization dedicated to changing people’s opinions about the ocean and protect it, recently launched a campaign to irradicate the use of drift nets (a large net suspended in the water that catches many fish), used by fisherment. The nets are normally used for tuna and swordfish; however, they kill over 100,000 whales, dolphins, seal and sharks every year.

In addition, drift nets only catch about 15% of the target species (tunas and swordfish) while the other 85% caught are bycatch.

The Conservation steps taken must include raising awareness of the issue around the world and working with fishermen to find alternatives to using drift nets. The Consortium of Wildlife Bycatch Reduction does this by working with a number of fishermen and organizations to research alternative fishing gear that will maximize the target species caught and minimize the bycatch caught.

Link to Story 1: http://www.theblackfish.org/news/driftnet-victims.html

Climate Change Making for Once Great Whale Watching Winter

Warmer than normal temperatures are bringin good fortune for the whale whatching industry in Virginia Beach, US. Humpback whales are seen in record numbers as they feed on their bait fish prey. The humpbacks are very well socialized and have been seen to come close to the whale watches.

The whale watchers are being extra pre-cautious as they do not want to stress out the bus-sized mammal.

Story Link 2: http://hamptonroads.com/2012/02/warm-weather-brings-whales-closer-va-beach-shores

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