Protecting Marine Life

The Current – California’s 1999 Marine Life Protection Act established a statewide network of marine protected areas (MPAs) to conserve marine life and habitats along the state’s 1,100-mile coast. In 2007, the first regional MPA was situated in the Central Coast region, covering Point Conception to Pigeon Point north of Santa Cruz. Among the three areas that followed was the South Coast Read More…

The bipartisan solution for saving sharks

The Hill – As a part of the generation that grew up watching “Jaws,” my wife and many others share President Trump's gut-level aversion to sharks. But if the conservation-themed documentaries that feed our fascination for them have taught us anything, it is that the fearsome caricature presented in the film gets these fish all wrong. Instead, they are some of the most captivating, Read More…

Scientists Take A Ride On The Pacific’s ‘Shark Highway’

NPR – For the first time, scientists have videotaped sharks traveling a 500-mile-long "shark highway" in the Pacific, and they plan to turn it into a protected wildlife corridor in the ocean. Biologists have been attaching electronic tags to sharks near Costa Rica for years. They knew the sharks sometimes traveled south to the Galapagos Islands, but they'd never actually witnessed it. And Read More…

Japan to create environmental DNA database for better use of marine…

LMT Online – The Fisheries Agency plans to create a database for marine resources based on the environmental DNA of fish, which is genetic material that is left in seawater, according to sources. The agency intends to collect seawater samples in the sea around Japan as early as this summer, and start to gather and analyze the data of environmental DNA necessary to specify the species and Read More…

Getting little respect, kelp could be the key to survival for some…

Kitsap Sun – It is all too easy for us to forget about Puget Sound’s productive kelp forests, which have been slowly vanishing from numerous places where masses of vegetation once proliferated. I never fully appreciated the value of kelp until I began writing about the complexity of the Puget Sound ecosystem. While scuba diving years ago, I came to understand that kelp harbored a vast Read More…

Rigs-to-Reefs: Giving Oil Platforms a Second Life for Conservation

News Deeply – Offshore oil rigs are supported on steel and concrete structures that extend thousands of feet to the ocean floor. Even as rigs pump fossil fuels, they’re also colonized by mussels, barnacles, rockfish and other species, becoming artificial reefs. Typically when wells run dry, rigs are dismantled, but Emily Jackson and Amber Callahan argue that more retired oil Read More…

Gunshot Sensors Pinpoint Destructive “Fish Bombs”

Scientific American – Rogue fishers around the world toss explosives into the sea and scoop up bucketloads of stunned or dead fish, an illegal practice in many nations that can destroy coral reefs and wreak havoc on marine biodiversity. Catching perpetrators amid the vastness of the ocean has long proved almost impossible, but researchers working in Malaysia have now adapted acoustic Read More…

US says number of overfished fish stocks at all-time low

Washington Post – The number of American fish stocks that can be described as “overfished” has hit an all-time low, the U.S. government announced on Thursday. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration made the statement as part of its annual Status of Stocks Report to Congress. Six populations of fish are being removed from its list of overfished stocks, including the popular Read More…

The Delicacy Dilemma: Stone Crabs and Ocean Acidification

Southern Boating – The first study on Florida stone crabs and ocean acidification was published this month by a Mote Marine Laboratory scientist and offers clues for relieving environmental stress on these tasty and economically valuable crabs. The study in the peer-reviewed Journal of Marine Biology ad Ecology provides the first evidence the stone crab embryos develop more slowly and Read More…

Scientists Race to Decode Disease Devastating Florida Coral Reefs

News Deeply – In 2014, coral reefs in Florida started to turn bright white. But this was not the heat-stress bleaching that has become a familiar and deadly phenomenon in recent years – this was a disease. Coral tissue sickened and died, leaving a bare white skeleton. Like a contagious flu strain, it spread quickly through the corals of southeast Florida and the upper Florida Keys. Then, Read More…