Pacific bluefin wants your soul. Photo via OpenCage/Wikimedia There’s nothing like a terrifying headline to point out how differently scientists and the public see the world. On Monday, a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States (PNAS) found that Pacific bluefin tuna had carried detectable radiation from . . . → Read More: Detectable but not hazardous: radioactive marine life of Fukushima
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
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
So here we are in Mexico for the first of two Georgia Aquarium research trips this summer. This is the logistically simpler of the two, for exciting reasons I am not yet at liberty to discuss. On this one we are focusing on photo ID as part of the ECOCEAN project. Yesterday was our first . . . → Read More: Hello old friends
Recently, news streams, scientific journals, and the web are exploding with conservation news. Below is few highlights from the past few weeks. I’ll take my fish in oil please. PLoS One published an article by Fodrie and Heck concluding that immediate catastrophic loss of fish was avoided in the Gulf oil spill. They also found . . . → Read More: Does Weeping Help? Recent Conservation News
Carnival of the Blue Mike Bok of the sensational Arthropoda blog has the latest Carnival of the Blue (edition #39!) up. Lots of great reads. Next month is held at our good friend Angelo’s Saipan Blog. For “Carnival of the Blue XL: Top of the Food Chain” edition send in your posts about predation in . . . → Read More: The Giant Linkopod