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Overfishing: Another Ocean Danger for Animal Conservation Week

This post continues our Animal Conservation Week, to highlight animals in danger & steps you can take to help!

As we continue Shark Week, shark preservation highlights another problem we’re facing in the ocean: Overfishing.

70% of the world’s fisheries are fully or overly exploited, depleted or in a state of collapse. That’s a scary statistic since previously ‘common’ fish like Bluefin tuna & Atlantic salmon are severely overfished and environmental groups are trying to get them endangered status.   5 of 8 tuna species are threatened due to overfishing – with Southern bluefin stocks crashed with little hope of recovery.  And since many of these fish are on top of the food chain, it can throw off entire ecosystems… including a further danger for whales, dolphins and sharks.

Up to 90% of large, open-water fish have been depleted over the last 50 years.  In 1900, our oceans contained 6 times as much fish than in 2009! Big fish aren’t the only ones in danger, either – small fish are also in danger to safeguard food chains from plankton to blue whales.  Oh, and wide-cast nets often capture other fish unintended for its catch..including sharks (as I learned from the Discovery Channel!)

Fish are a main source of protein for 1/5 of the world’s population AND oceans help absorb carbon dioxide… so what happens in the oceans affect us in Philadelphia, even if you don’t consume it.

Unfortunately farmed fish appear to have some health risks as well. And some even argue there are NO sustainable fish. So what’s the solution?

Posted by Julie

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Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake. View all posts by Julie Hancher

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