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Weaker ropes could save whales from entanglement

Weaker ropes could save whales from entanglement

A new study in the US has concluded that switching fishing gear to use ropes that break at 1700 pounds or less, could reduce potentially life-threatening entanglements for whales by over 70%. At the same time the ropes would still be effective for many types of fishing activities. The study examined live and dead whales…

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Limits on damaging fishing methods could help the economy and whales

A report issued today, and backed by WDC, states that placing proportionate limits on some types of fishing could help boost long-term jobs in fragile Scottish rural communities, as well as protect the environment. The Scottish government is due to announce measures for managing fishing in several Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) later this month. The…

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Warmer waters threaten whales in Pacific Ocean

Whales migrating through the waters off California in the US maybe at risk from the unusual warming in the Pacific Ocean, which is causing them to change their feeding habits. In 2015, more than 60 whales that have become entangled in fishing gear have been spotted along the coastline, up 400 percent on normal levels.…

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Welsh government halts flawed scallop dredging consultation after complaint

The Welsh government has now halted a public consultation process regarding controversial plans concerning a protected marine area in Cardigan Bay, home to many bottlenose dolphins. Government officials have blamed “technical issues” and have said that the process would have to restart at a later date. The move follows a call by WDC and partner organisations,…

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Entangled humpback whale rescued in Scotland

A humpback whale has been freed from fishing gear thanks to the help of a local retired fisherman on the Isle of Skye. The whale was first sighted a couple of weeks ago but after attempts to free the creature were unsuccessful, it was feared it may have drowned. However, retired fisherman John Mckinnon sighted…

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Whaling commission voices grave concern over Maui’s dolphin future

Scientists from the International Whaling Commission have voiced their “grave concern” for the endangered Maui’s dolphin, a sub-species of the New Zealand dolphin. Estimates for the number of remaing dolphins range from 43 to 69 with one researcher, Dr. Liz Slooten, predicting there could be just a few individuals left within a couple of decades.…

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Dolphin death leads to trawler ban in Australian fishery

Just over a month after a 95-metre factory fishing trawler, the Geelong Star, had to return to port following two incidents of dolphins and seals dying in its fishing nets, a ninth dolphin has died, leading to a complete ban on all factory trawling in the area known as zone 6, off New South Wales…

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NASA satellites to help protect whales from space

Scientists in the US have announced the development of a new tool that they hope will lead to a reduction in the number of whale deaths caused by boat collisions and entanglement in fishing gear. The software tool, called “WhaleWatch”, has been developed by scientists and NASA and will be able to predict the most…

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Record number of whales entangled on US west coast

A record number of whales were reported entangled in fishing gear in in 2014 off the west coast of the US (Washington State, Oregon and California), according to figures from the US authorities. The data, released by the Center for Biological Diversity, shows that at least 30 whales, mainly gray and humpback, were found entangled,…

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Australian super trawler ban could help whales and dolphins

The Australian government has announced that it is to stop so-called super trawlers from fishing in Australia’s territorial waters, a move which could help whales and dolphins that get accidentally caught, injured or killed in the vessel’s huge nets. Sadly the ban only applies to boats 427 feet (130 meters) or longer. These vessels can…

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