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Articles & News Tagged “Environment”

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Celebrating International Whale Shark Day Photo

Celebrating International Whale Shark Day

30 August is International Whale Shark Day. It is sad to note that this is the first such day since its inception that these amazing animals have ben classified as Endangered on the IUCN Red List. Research suggests a decline in population numbers of between 40 to 92% over the past 75 years. The reasons for this are all human caused: Overfishing, catch as by-catch in net fisheries and ship strike count as the most pertinent causes.

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Tagged:environment, wetpixel, whale shark day
President Obama creates world’s largest MPA Photo

President Obama creates world’s largest MPA

On Friday, President Obama has quadrupled the size of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument off the coast of Hawaii. It will now contain some 582,578 square miles, more than twice the size of Texas. It is home to 7,000 marine species. All commercial resource extraction activities, including commercial fishing and any future mineral extraction, will be prohibited from the whole area.

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Paper describes shark concentration at Fakarava Photo

Paper describes shark concentration at Fakarava

A paper in the Current Biology Journal describes the “inverted trophic pyramid” that exists at the South Pass at Fakarava, French Polynesia. Between 250 to 700 grey reef sharks (Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos) inhabit the area thanks to the grouper spawning aggregations that occur in the pass.

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Great white shark population threatened Photo

Great white shark population threatened

A new survey has found that the population numbers of great white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) off South Africa is about half what had been expected. A paper in Marine Ecology Progress Series shows the results of a six year study into the numbers of the apex predators and shows that there are only between 353 and 522 of the sharks. Of these, around 333 are of breeding age. (Image from Shutterstock).

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Tagged:environment, great white shark, news
Cathay Pacific announces shark fin ban Photo

Cathay Pacific announces shark fin ban

The BBC reports that Hong Kong’s flag carrier airline Cathay Pacific has finally announced that with immediate effect it will no longer carry shark fin. Previously, the airline had refused an outline ban, but would only “transport shark fin that was sustainably sourced.”. A campaign has now forced it to ban the carriage of “all shark products on cargo and passenger flights.” (Image from Shutterstock).

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Funding needed: Looking for Lost Sharks Photo

Funding needed: Looking for Lost Sharks

A project on the scientific crowdfunding platform, experiment, is seeking to raise $1,800 funding for the classification and naming of a new species of shark. The tentatively named ghost sharks are deep water species from the Western Indian Ocean that are now being featured in fisheries and by scientists as the tools for sampling at extreme depth are developed. As yet, they have not bene formally classified or named.

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Tagged:environment, ghost sharks, news
Shark Sanctuaries announced in Caribbean Photo

Shark Sanctuaries announced in Caribbean

The Caribbean islands of St. Maarten and the Cayman Islands have both announced that their exclusive economic zones are now closed for commercial shark fishing, Pew Environment reports. The islands of Curacao and Grenada have also committed to enact similar legislation this year too.

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Tagged:environment, news, shark sanctuary
New species of lanternshark described Photo

New species of lanternshark described

Researchers have discovered a new species of lanternshark. Etmopterus benchleyi or the ninja lanternshark has been described in a paper (pdf) published in the Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation. It is found at great depths in the central eastern Pacific, and have tiny bioluminescent dots all over their bodies.

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Tagged:environment, news, ninja lanternshark