Sardines school off Baja California. Photo by Jon Bertsch. http://www.thalassagraphics.com/blog/?p=167 I only eat anchovies with Caesar salad, and am rather fond of the tiny fish that add a bit of strong flavor to the romaine lettuce. I’m unusual for wanting to get even that close to the tiny, oily fish – sardines, anchovy, menhaden – . . . → Read More: How to eat sardines sustainably
CITES is the 1973 Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, to which 175 nations are signatories. Along with the IUCN Red List, it’s one of the main ways that the international conservation status of a species is recognised (IUCN) and regulated (CITES). The main mechanism for this at CITES is through listing of a . . . → Read More: Will marine conservation miss out at the next CITES meeting?
As a followup to Monday’s post on the National Geographic Atlantic bluefin-hunting reality TV show Wicked Tuna, I wanted to highlight some other perspectives. Please go ahead and post those I missed in the comments. From the Center for American Progress (h/t Cameron Coates): Bluefin tuna is one of the poster children for overfishing. . . . → Read More: Wicked Tuna link roundup
When I wrote about Wicked Tuna, the National Geographic channel’s Atlantic bluefin tuna fishing reality show (first aired Sunday night), I thought it would be pretty straightforward. Every rating system – Seafood Watch, Sea Choice, Blue Ocean Institute – lists Atlantic bluefin as an “Avoid.” A look through the scientific literature – though I am not a tuna or fisheries expert – showed a vast gap between the fisheries literature, which focuses on bluefin population structure , and the conservation literature, which is trying to sound the alarm about bluefin’s decline. Frankly, I didn’t think it would be terribly controversial to argue that a purportedly conservation-focused organization like National Geographic shouldn’t encourage consumption of Atlantic bluefin tuna. So I was pretty surprised when two very different scientists, Lee Crockett, Director of Federal Fisheries Policy at the Pew Environment Group and Dr. Molly Lutcavage, Director of the Large Pelagics Research Center at U Mass-Amherst disagreed with my perspective. (I was offered a chance to talk with Crockett about bluefin before the post went up, but the scheduling didn’t work out until afterwards. Dr. Lutcavage reached out to DSN in response to the post.) Both of these tuna experts believe that Wicked Tuna is good publicity for the Atlantic bluefin. . . . → Read More: Eating Wicked Tuna: A marine scientist tries to figure out what the heck is going on
Shark finning is the capture of sharks expressly for the removal of their fins, which are used to make shark fin soup, a popular status symbol in many Chinese communities. I could understand and accept this practice if the fins were taken from animals that were harvested sustainably and for which markets existed for the . . . → Read More: A San Diego 5th grader is trying to end shark finning, will you help?
Wicked Tuna fishers land their catch. Image from LA Times The contradictions of the reality TV show Wicked Tuna, which follows fishers out of Gloucester, Massachusetts, as they use hook-and-line to catch bluefin tuna, are utterly mind-bending. Normally, I’d be cheering hook-and-line commercial fishers at the top of my lungs – unlike long lines or . . . → Read More: A wicked bad idear: National Geographic hunts bluefin tuna for entertainment
The Story of Sushi from Bamboo Sushi on Vimeo. Hat tip to Gizmodo.
Whale sharks (in Vietnamese: Ca Ong, literally “Sir Fish”), have been in the headlines quite a bit lately. Here’s a roundup: WA WS, OK? A whale shark was seen far from home back in January; it was around Perth, the capital of Western Australia. Now WA is home to probably the best characterised whale shark . . . → Read More: Sir Fish grabbing headlines, but it’s not all good
Image by Ray Troll The Gulf of Maine cod fishery was deemed to be on its way to recovery in 2008, with a chance of reaching “rebuilt” status by 2014. This was great news for this historically and economically important (and very tasty) fishery. Then, this year, fisheries scientists working on the 2011 stock assessment . . . → Read More: How did Gulf of Maine cod suddenly go from “recovering” to “overfished”?
White-tip reef shark, Fiji © 2011 Angelo Villagomez Causal relationships can be fiendishly tricky. Spend an hour watching any of Star Trek Voyager’s time travel episodes and you begin to understand why the show’s writers often resort to lines such as, “It’s better if we don’t talk about this too much.” Consider another example of . . . → Read More: For Want Of A Shark…