All Posts for Overfishing

Seathos and BluKicks Present: Shark Week Trivia Contest!

August 14th, 2012

We’re excited to announce a fun little contest we’ll be running this week (SHARK WEEK!), giving you the chance to win some brand new stylish, waterproof shoes courtesy of Blu Kicks!

Starting tomorrow at 12pm PST, we’ll be asking shark-themed trivia questions everyday via our facebook page (facebook.com/seathos). Whoever responds the quickest by sending an email to team@seathos.org with the CORRECT answer wins a pair of shoes!!

Not going to be by a computer at 12pm? Not to worry! Each day, you’ll have a second chance to win. ROUND TWO of trivia will be posted at 7pm PST as well! So that’s six chances to win. 12pm and 7pm (PST) Wednesday 8/15 to Friday 8/18.

A little bit about Blu Kicks:

Drawing inspiration from the Humuhumunukunukuapua’a Fish of Hawaii for their very design, Blu Kicks began manufacturing shoes with the mission to protect the Humu fish with every purchase. Humus, like many fish, are victims of overfishing and abuse. One dollar from each shoe sale goes to protect the Humu’s native habitat in Hawaii.

Check out more from Blu Kicks at www.blukicks.com. Shop their Shark Week line of shoes and 15% of the proceeds will be donated to Seathos Foundation!

So, to refresh. The contest will run Weds 8/15 to Fri 8/18. Two rounds of questions everyday. One at 12pm, the following at 7pm (both PST). The first correct answer emailed to team@seathos.org wins!!

Good luck and Happy Shark Week!

Earth Day 2012: The Top 5 Threats to Our Oceans, Part Two

April 22nd, 2012

Continued from Part One, focused on Overfishing and Marine Pollution. Read part one here.

Climate Change

Several studies have shown that in the past century our planet has seen climate change and warming unlike any other time in recent history. While this has many effects on land, such as more erratic weather patterns, it effects the oceans in two main ways: sea temperature and sea level rise.

In the past century, the temperature of the ocean has raised 0.18°F (0.1°C). Factors such as ozone depletion and increased solar activity contribute to this rise. As the surface of the water absorbs heat and the temperature rises. Some sub-tropical seas have shown a 1 degree surface temperature rise in the past half-century.

Warmer than usual marine environments also give way to marine invasive species. That is, species that do not typically inhabit a given area but with abnormal temperatures can survive in the new environment. These species can deplete a once healthy ecosystem by introducing disease and competing for food.

As ocean water warms, it expands. Due to increased sea temperature, the sea level is rising. Ice melting on land also contributes to the rise in sea level. Sea levels are expected to rise between 2.5 and 6.5 feet by 2100, a level that would swamp many cities along the East Coast of the U.S. There are other more dire scenarios some environmental scientists believe to be possible. Such as, if the Greenland ice sheet were to completely melt, the sea level could rise up to 23 feet, enough to submerge London and Los Angeles.

Ocean Acidification

Above-normal sea temperature is a contributing factor to coral bleaching. Ocean acidification also plays a major part. Over the last 250 years, the ocean has absorbed 530 billion tons of CO2 which has increased ocean acidity by 30%. Under these harmful circumstances, once healthy coral loses its algae pigmentation and expels zooxanthellae, causing it to turn white.

Acidity reduces carbonate- the mineral used to form the shells of many species such as lobster and mussels as well as smaller species which the food chain heavily depends on.

Due to ocean acidification, coral reefs are depleting twice as fast as rainforests.

Marine Habitat Loss and Destruction

70% of the world is covered by the ocean, yet only .6% of our worlds oceans are protected.

Factors such as overfishing, coral bleaching, boating, oil spills and other industrial pollution all cause serious damage to our oceans. Coral reefs bare most the brunt of marine habitat loss. Over 15% of the worlds coral reefs have already been lost. 30% of those still existing are directly threatened by human impacts.

Costal development can lead to runoff and erosion that is harmful to the surrounding marine area. This occurs all along our coastlines, small island developments and coastal swamps and marshes.

Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are similar to National Parks on land. While they are not closed off completely to human activity, they only allow a certain minimal and regulated presence.

Hope everyone has a great Earth Day and celebrates it in their own way. We encourage you to share our Earth Day 2012 page. For every share, we at Seathos will collect 1 lb of trash from our local beach in Venice, CA.

Earth Day 2012: The Top 5 Threats to Our Oceans, Part One

April 20th, 2012

The tireless and iconic ocean conservationist and activist Sylvia Earle has said that “what we do or fail to do in the next 10 years will have a magnified impact on the next 10,000 years.” This is a call to arms of sorts, a plea to shed ignorance and indifference and learn more about the dangers our oceans face, influencing us all to take positive steps towards helping to heal our oceans, rather than cause them more harm.

To celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd, Seathos is raising awareness of the top five threats our oceans face today: Overfishing, pollution, climate change, ocean acidification and marine habitat loss.

Overfishing

Our oceans are not an endless bounty of food, but they are being treated as such. Currently, 75% of the world’s fishstocks are fished faster than they can reproduce. More than 3.5 billion people depend on the ocean for their primary source of food. In 20 years, this number will double to 7 billion.

Not only does overfishing deplete once thriving marine ecosystems, but it is also has a direct negative impact on the human race as well. Abundant fish populations are vital to the survival of millions of people who depend on seafood production for food and jobs. With a growing human population and dwindling fish stocks, over fishing jeopardizes the livelihoods of many.

Pollution

Trash, chemicals, fertilizers and other harmful contaminants find their way into the ocean every minute of every day. Various factors contribute to water pollution, such as improper disposal of industrial waste, marine dumping, sewage, wastewater and agricultural runoff.

Marine litter is now 60-80% plastic, and can reach 90% in certain areas. Over 100,000 marine mammals and 1,000,000 seabirds die each year from ingesting or becoming entangled in plastic.

Plastic particles, some large, some microscopic, are scattered all throughout the ocean, but perhaps the most startling evidence of marine plastic pollution is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a gyre of marine litter located in the North Pacific. The gyre’s exact size is debatable, but studies have ranged from sizing it between twice the size of Hawaii and as large as the entire continental United States.

Head on over to Seathos’ Earth Day 2012 Campaign page and take part in our 1 for 1 pledge. For every share the page receives the Seathos team will collect 1lb of trash from our local beach in Venice, CA.

Stay tuned for Part Two, highlighting climate change, ocean acidification and marine habitat loss.

Sea Creature of the Week: Earth Day Edition

April 16th, 2012

Atlantic Bluefin Tuna

Also known as the Northern Bluefin Tuna, the Giant Bluefin Tuna, or better yet, “tunny”, the Atlantic Bluefin Tuna grows to enormous sizes, has incredible physical features, and is a highly-prized over-fished species. The Bluefin Tuna is endangered and needs your help to survive! Stay posted for our upcoming Earth Day campaign for information on how you can help prevent overfishing!

Scientific Name: Thunnus thynnus

Home: A warm blooded fish, the Atlantic Bluefin Tuna enjoys the cold waters of Newfoundland and Iceland, as well as the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and the Mediterranean Sea. 

It is an avid migratory fish and has been tracked swimming from North America to Europe numerous times throughout the year. The Atlantic Bluefin Tuna has become extinct in the Black Sea.

Physical Characteristics: The Atlantic Bluefin Tuna is highly evolved and resembles a robotic fish. It has a torpedo-shaped body and crescent-shaped tail enabling it to shoot through waters at speeds up to 43 miles per hour.

The Bluefin Tuna retracts its dorsal and pectoral fins into slots to reduce drag; The finlets on their tails are believed to reduce water turbulence! They are beautifully colored- shimmery blue on top and grey on bottom, which camouflages it from all sides. The Atlantic Bluefin Tuna is enormous and can surpass the average size of 6.5 feet in length and 550 lbs!

Food: The Bluefin Tuna reaches its large size by constantly eating! Their diet includes smaller fish and invertebrates such as crustaceans, squid, eels, sardines, herrings, and mackerel. They filter-feed on small organisms such as zooplankton and also enjoy eating kelp.

Conservation Status: Despite their unique physical features, incredible speed and strength, the Atlantic Bluefin Tuna is endangered. It has been a prized food fish since the time of the Ancient Greeks and Phoenicians. 

In the 1970′s, demand for Bluefin tuna soared world-wide, particularly in Japan where tuna is very popular in the raw fish market. High demand accompanied with unsustainable fishing practices has led to the dramatic decline in Bluefin Tuna populations.

In October of 2009, The International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) stated that Atlantic Bluefin Tuna populations have declined by 72% in the Eastern Atlantic and 82% in the Western Atlantic over the past 40 years. In 2010, European officials increased pressure to ban international commercial fishing of Atlantic Bluefin Tuna. Despite these efforts, illegal fishing in Europe has caused the Bluefin Tuna to reach near extinction in European waters.

Fun Facts:
The Atlantic Bluefin Tuna is warm blooded, which is a rare trait for fish to have! They have the ability to thermoregulate, adjusting their body temperatures to warm or cold waters.

The largest tuna ever recorded was an Atlantic Bluefin Tuna caught in the waters of Nova Scotia that weighed 1,496 lbs!!!

The female Bluefin Tuna can lay up to 30 million eggs!!

In January 2012, a 593 lb Bluefin Tuna sold in the Japanese fish market for $736,000- a world record!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming Sea•thos Earth Day Campaign!!

April 11th, 2012

The 42nd Anniversary of Earth Day is quickly approaching on April 22, 2012! 

Are you frustrated that governments have not responded quickly or efficiently enough to depleting resources, climate change, species extinction and other pressing environmental issues? If so, Earth Day 2012 is the perfect opportunity to put your PASSION into ACTION!!

This year’s Earth Day aims to “Mobilize the Earth” by providing individuals, communities, and organizations with opportunities to take action into their own hands for a sustainable future.

Visit the Earth Day 2012 website to explore ways to get involved including petitions, Billion Acts of Green (pledges), and community events!

Be sure to check out Seathos’s Act of Green which features a pledge to stop using single-use plastics!

Seathos is excited to announce our very own up coming Earth Day campaign! This year’s theme is “Ten years to save the ocean” featuring the top 5 ocean threats: Over fishing, marine pollution, ocean acidification, climate change, and habitat destruction.

Each topic will be accompanied with colorful pictures, interesting facts, and easy solutions that anyone can put into action. We encourage everyone to enter to win free Seathos stuff, and “share” and “like” our campaign page!

For every “like” the page receives, Seathos will pick up one pound of trash from the beach!!! So don’t miss out on our upcoming Earth Day campaign and your chance to give the ocean a voice!!! :)

Undersea Adventure!

April 10th, 2012

In 2007, Greenpeace took a deep sea expedition to the Zhemchug and Pribilof canyons in Alaska’s Bering Sea. The expedition brought to surface the first ever footage of deep sea life in the canyons! 

According to Greenpeace, the Zhemchug and Pribilof canyons support some of the ocean’s largest and most productive ecosystems. Despite the depths of the two canyons (both are larger than Arizona’s Grand Canyon), the lush ecosystems they support are threatened by overfishing.  

A recent study conducted by the University of California Santa Barbara, Greenpeace, and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Agency’s Alaska Fisheries Science Center, found that there is evidence of disturbance caused by industrial fishing activity in the remote canyons of the Bering Sea.

In response to the study, the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC) has initiated a process to assess their current fishery management and habitat-protection measures in the canyons.

Check out footage from Greenpeace’s expedition! The videos offer a unique chance to explore colorful ocean life at depths of the sea!!

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