06/24/2005: More Friday News...
Now here is news I like to read about: Saving Sea Turtles:
” Preliminary results from the first large-scale testing of specially designed fishing hooks are being presented at the Annual Meeting of the Inter- American Tropical Tuna Commission in Lanzarotte, Spain. Thus far, the results indicate the use of circle hooks can reduce the number of endangered sea turtles killed in long line fishing operations by as much as 90 percent, World Wildlife Fund said today.
Incidental death-as a result of traditional long line fishing operations-is one of the main reasons for the precipitous decline of loggerhead, and giant leatherback turtles, whose numbers in the Eastern Pacific have plunged by more than 90 percent over the past 20 years.
The results of a year-long study involving 115 Ecuadorian fishing vessels found "bycatch" was dramatically reduced when the boats replaced their traditional "J' shaped hooks with specially designed circle hooks. "This is a win-win situation. We were looking for a way to save the turtles without putting the fishermen out of business. The preliminary results indicate we've found it. Circle hooks seem to be an effective new tool in our efforts to address this urgent conservation problem" said Moises Mug, Fisheries Coordinator for WWF's Latin America and Caribbean program.
-- WWF is now conducting or supporting turtle conservation work in 45 countries and is engaged in every major international turtle conservation policy discussion underway. In the eastern Pacific, WWF has a long history of constructive engagement in the bycatch reduction work of IATTC, and is now formally represented on the Commission. In the western Pacific, WWF has helped shape the new Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission policies, which will be important in reducing turtle bycatch in longline fisheries.
-- Scientists estimate that as many as 200,000 loggerheads and 50,000 leatherbacks are caught annually by commercial long-line tuna, swordfish, and other fisheries.
Courtesy of US news Wire.
Karen on 06.24.05 @ 09:46 AM CST