Articles & News Tagged “Environment”
Florida Shark Fin ban needs support
Legislation has now been tabled in the Florida State Legislature that will end the trade in the fins of sharks or rays. If passed, the ban will include both the fins of animals caught within the state’s waters and fins imported via its ports. Bills have been filed in the Senate (352) and House (99) but they need public support to move forward and be voted into law.
Paper documents manta mating behavior
A paper has been published in the journal Fish Biology detailing a 14-year study into the mating and courtship behavior of oceanic (Manta birostris) and reef (Mobula alfredi) manta rays. The study used behavioral observations, video and photographic records to catalog 229 courtship events in the Maldives.
Spot A Shark USA
Underwater image maker Tanya Houppermans has shared an article about a new citizen science project that aims to use images of sharks to assists scientists to study sand tiger sharks (Carcharias taurus). The site allows photographers to load images and then they can be tracked via subsequent images of the animal.
Maarten de Brauwer: Time to stop mucking around?
Scientist and researcher Maarten de Brauwer is studying the impact that divers and photographers have on the marine environment. His most recent paper Time to stop mucking around? Impacts of underwater photography on cryptobenthic fauna found in soft sediment habitats was published in the Journal of Environmental Management earlier this year. In this article, he kindly provides a synopsis of his research and some guidelines about ways in which underwater image makers can help avoid inadvertent environmental damage.
The Shark Trust endorses shark aquarium project
Paper shows relationships between sea bird populations and reef health
A paper published in the journal Nature shows a causal relationships between sea birds populations and reef health. A team from Lancaster University has compared reefs in the Chagos archipelago, some surrounding islands that are rat free, and others on which rats have been introduced. The rat free islands have significantly higher populations of sea birds.
Paper investigates metabolic cost of cage diving
Japan slaughters 122 pregnant minke whales
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that International Whaling Commission has reported (pdf) that the Japanese whaling fleet killed 333 Antarctic minke whales (Balaenoptera bonaerensis) during last summer’s hunt. 122 of the whales killed were pregnant and 114 were immature. Japan justified the killings by claiming that they needed lethal sampling methods in order to sample age, size and stomach contents. (Image credit: Australian Customs and Border Protection Service)
Research shows Pacific shark highway
Researchers from the University of Costa Rica along with Fundación PACÍFICO have successfully proven the existence of a 500 mile “corridor” along which shark populations move between Costa Rica and the Galapagos. The route seems to follow a series of subsurface sea mounts, giving rise to speculation as to whether these serve as navigational references or feeding sites. (Image by Andy Mann/Waitt Foundation/Pacifico)