Divers and non-divers alike attending the London International Dive Show (#LIDS 2012) this weekend are in for a treat as marine ecologist and whale shark specialist Dr Simon J Pierce will be giving presentations with Project AWARE about whale shark conservation and ways to give sharks a fighting chance.
The Costa Rican government has announced that it will propose the inclusion of the scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini) in Appendix III of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
They believe that this species meets the conditions and criteria for an inclusion in Appendix III, in accordance with the Resolution Conf 9.25 (Rev CoP 15).
“Today we changed the mindset of 13 Divemasters and 4 Instructors and I know they will be AWARE for the rest of their lives,” said Jens Nielsen Ban’s PADI Staff instructor. It was a memorable day for Jens and fellow instructor Simon from Ban's Diving Resort, Koh Tao, Thailand who taught their first AWARE Shark Conservation course.
Monday, European Union nations backed a complete ban on the practice of removing sharks' fins before throwing the fish back into the sea to die.
The EU nations said they want all boats in their waters and EU-registered boats anywhere in the world to land sharks with their fins attached. The proposals still need the support of the European Parliament before they can become law.
EU fisheries chief Maria Damanaki said the law would "ease control and help us eradicate shark finning," which she called cruel to the animals and a vast waste of resources.
Project AWARE is pounding the pavement to make the ocean safer for some of the most overexploited sharks. We have less than a year to secure international trade protections for sharks at the next meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES (CITES CoP16) to be held in March 2013, Thailand.
One afternoon on the island of Koh Tao, a poor boat captain watched as his vessel filled with rubbish. Over five hours, ten volunteer divers removed a record amount of trash from one reef.
Some months earlier, in a bid to protect a shallow reef at Hin Ngam, local dive schools and the Save Koh Tao Group installed a ‘No Boat’ Zoning Line. But after the monsoon season New Heaven divers were astonished to find an 80 metre stretch of line covered in bags, ropes, and marine debris.
The spectacular snouts of sawfish are revealed as complete hunting weapons, sensing prey and killing them.
The saws, which can grow more than a metre long in some species, have previously been identified as able to sense prey by their electric fields.
Now, researchers have filmed the fish impaling prey on the teeth of the saws.
They suggest in Current Biology that sawfish are more active hunters than previously thought, which could help in their much-needed MORE
Last week the European Parliament began its work on the Commission’s proposal to close major loopholes in the EU ban on shark finning submitted in the fall of 2011.
The European Commission has proposed ending special permits that allow fishermen to cut off shark fins at sea and land them separately from the bodies under a legal exemption to the overall EU requirement for landing sharks with their fins naturally attached.
Sailors have reported seeing everything from a canoe, to shoes, rope, cigarette lighters, chunks of metal and whole trees floating in the strait, leaving them wondering what lies beneath the murky surface.
PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG skipper Ken Read said he was saddened to see the quantity of rubbish floating in the shipping superhighway, which had left him dismayed by humanity.
“It’s an incredible place to sail but the sad part is how much stuff is in the water, how much junk there is in the water,’’ he said. MORE
Divers everywhere are uniting like never before for a clean, healthy ocean. Each and every day we’re amazed by your dedication and your ocean actions.
Project AWARE’s My Ocean online community has been helping you connect, organize and shine a light on your underwater actions for change. Every week the underwater data, photos, blogs and events you post are on display. And you’re inspiring others to mobilize around the world.