Design your own deep sea creature e-card and help stop high seas bottom trawling before its too late.
We'll help you send it to Ben Bradshaw and Joe Borg, two men who
havethe opportunity to champion the high seas at the UN General
Assemblyand give our deep sea life a fighting chance.
We are just starting to understand the complex and
mysteriousecosystems of the deep seas. Ninety percent of the
potential 10 milliondeep sea species live in, on or just above the
sea floor. Oftenexisting beyond the reach of sunlight, many life
forms are slowto grow and mature. Eight-thousand-year-old
cold-water corals can riseup to 35 metres, providing protection and
spawning grounds for countless organisms not yet seen by
High seas bottom trawling targeting single species can devastate
entire ecosystems in its wake. Nets thesize of football pitches
drag up to 30 tonnes of trawl gear, ploughingthrough approximately
12 square kilometres of sea bed every 24 hours.
Nets are filled with bycatch --coral, sponges, crustaceans,
undersized fish, fish of the wrong species etc --all dumped back
into the sea, dead or dying. Vulnerableenvironments that took
thousands of years to evolve can be destroyed ina matter of
Hitplay on the movie above to see what
the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition has tosay about why we
shouldn't eat the creatures of the deep.
During our recent visit to the North Atlantic, we observed 20
bottomtrawlers in the international waters 200 miles east of Canada
over athree week period.
An estimated 60 percent of destructive high seas bottom trawling
occursin this area, supposedly under the care of the Northwest
AtlanticFisheries Organisation (NAFO).
"We witnessed example after example of bad management,
overfishing, anddestruction of deep sea life and habitat from heavy
fishing gear beingdragged over the seabed. We saw an indifference
to the need to protectvulnerable and fragile ecosystems as well as
suspect operators, such asthe Lootus II, which are linked to
illegal fishing in other parts ofthe globe," said Bunny McDiarmid,
Greenpeace International OceansCampaigner.
Discussions with skippers aboard shrimp trawlers revealed how
theyget around time limits set on trawling by using bigger trawlers
and upto four nets at a time. Oh and unsurprisingly, the skippers
noticed theshrimp are getting smaller.
"We want a UN moratorium on high seas bottom trawling now,"
saidMcDiarmid. "We need to force decision-makers to sort out
themismanagement of deep sea fisheries and to give scientists
thenecessary time to identify which vulnerable areas need
protection fromthis destructive fishing practice" she said.
Let's show Ben Bradshaw -- of the UKDepartment of Environment,
Food and Rural Affairs, and Joe Borg --European Commissioner for
Fisheries and Maritime Affairs what we mightbe missing out on.
Click here to design a deep sea creaturee-card or use our
pre-made one to get your message to the guys who canmake a
Create your own creature-from-the-deep e-card at the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition website.
Help defend our oceans, donate now.