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Read about all the latest developments in the ocean protection movement.

 

In the News

Dec. 18/12

A Kiwi man's dream to establish a shark sanctuary the size of Mexico has been realised in the Cook Islands.

On December 12, the Cook Islands declared its 1997 million square kilometre Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) a sanctuary for sharks and rays - the largest in the world and with the toughest shark conservation regulations to date.

The sanctuary is the product of an 18-month grassroots campaign led by Auckland-born Stephen Lyon, a marine scientist and founder of the Rarotonga-based NGO the Pacific Islands Conservation Initiative (PICI).

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Dec. 11/12

In Miami, the world’s leading plastics associations launched a Progress Report on the Global Declaration of the Plastics Associations for Solutions on Marine Litter originally announced in March 2011 at the 5th International Marine Debris Conference.

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Dec. 06/12

Asia and Pacific nations agreed at a meeting in the Philippines on Wednesday to take steps to protect whale sharks in a victory for the world's largest fish, officials said.

Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission nations agreed that tuna fishers must stop setting their nets around the vulnerable giants in order to catch smaller fish that gather underneath them, said Palau fishing official Nanette Malsol.

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Nov. 29/12

A shark that swam from New Zealand to Fiji has returned home for Christmas, rounding off an 11,300km odyssey and amazed the scientists who tracked her journey.

In May, "Carol" became the first mako shark in New Zealand waters to be tracked with a satellite "spot" tag, under a Niwa research project funded by the Ministry for Primary Industries and Nova-Southeastern University in Florida.

Scientists watched in amazement as she set off for the Pacific Islands, only to change her mind halfway and turn back for a two-month stay near Ninety Mile Beach.

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Nov. 19/12

Fishing nations at the annual meeting of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) reached consensus on just one of seven proposals for action on sharks.  By the end of the eight-day meeting today, ICCAT Parties could only agree to report next year on their compliance with existing shark measures.  Proposals to establish ICCAT limits on shortfin mako and porbeagle failed, as did efforts to change existing measures on oceanic whitetip sharks and shark finning (slicing off a shark’s fins and discarding the body at sea).

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Nov. 16/12

Are the planet’s oceans doomed to become its waste bin? Marine litter  – plastics, wood, metal, rubber, paper and other debris – from human activity continues to invade and pollute oceans and seas, posing a serious threat to the coastal and marine environment worldwide.

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Nov. 11/12

Scientists have witnessed a “promising” recovery in the coral reefs around the Maldives, a recent survey has revealed.

The results show that some reefs now have more live coral cover than before the catastrophic El Niño bleaching event in 1998, which killed 95 percent of the country’s reefs – a key attraction for foreign tourists.

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Nov. 01/12

Major nations failed to reach agreement on Thursday to set up huge marine protected areas off Antarctica under a plan to step up conservation of creatures such as whales and penguins around the frozen continent.

The 25-member Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) agreed, however, to hold a special session in Germany in July 2013 to try to break the deadlock after the October 8-November 1 meeting in Hobart, Australia.

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Nov. 05/12

With their black eyes and rows of teeth, it’s easy to understand why many people fear sharks, but our view of these creatures is actually hurting their chances for survival.

A new analysis determined that negative media reports about sharks and shark attacks are hindering shark conservation efforts.  According to the analysis, Australian and U.S. news articles are more likely to focus on shark attacks than on shark conservation issues.

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Oct. 31/12

Research published today in the journal Conservation Biology presents the most comprehensive assessment of the status of Pacific shark populations to date. The paper, authored by Dr. Shelley Clarke and a team from the Secretariat of the Pacific Community in New Caledonia, shows significant declines in catch rates for blue, mako, and oceanic whitetip sharks, as well as declining average sizes of oceanic whitetip and silky sharks, indicating heavy fishing. These results, along with evidence of shark targeting reported by Dr.

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