Monday, December 11, 2006

SOMETHING IS FISHY?!

Last night my family went to the theatre to see Happy Feet, an amazing animated movie centred around a Penquin trying to get humans to stop overfishing.

Later that evening I watched a documentary on Sperm Whales, the largest carnivores on the planet. It is estimated that Sperm Whales consume an estimated 100 Million tons of prey every year. Every year Humans consume about the same amount of fish and catch about 130 Million Tons annually.

Then this morning I read in the Newspaper that the 6th annual Census of Marine Life, 2000 researchers from 80 countries, reported that the deeper parts of the Oceans, especially Anarctica, are full of fish.

They found 500 new species and located one specific school of fish that was the size of Manhattan and estimated that it contained 20 million fish!

This is the opposite of a report last year from the Food Agriculture Organization of the United Nations which reported that:

52% of fisheries are fully exploited, depleted or in recovery!
21% are moderately exploited
16% are over exploited
7% depleted
1% recovery from depletion
3% under exploited

Fishing methods such as bottom trawling use nets that are big enough to hold 3 Jumbo Jets and scrape bare an area twice the size of the US every year!!

Sperm Whales are of course designed to exploit a mysterious deep dark world far below the surface battling and eating Giant squid.

After inhaling air for 10 minutes at the surface a Sperm Whale can dive 3000 feet below and stay under for 90 minutes. For instance, diving around the main island of Hawaii, the world's tallest mountain (3,280 feet higher than Everest), these leviathons swim through an eerie alien mountain range of underwater volcanos.

Did you know that Life on Earth may have actually evolved at the bottom of the Sea without sunlight, fed only by chemicals and heat from the Earth's molten core?

A full grown Bull, 60 feet long weighing 60 tons, can stun a diver with the sonic pulses of his sonar..but the blast from a Navy ship searching for Nuclear Submarines can blind a whale and force them to surface too quickly and get the bends.

Disoriented whales at the surface the Whale can easily be struck by one of the 30,000 gigantic cargo ships that criss cross our oceans every year. Not only that but all of the NOISE from these ships disrupts Whale communications which normally extend for hundreds of miles.

Now from Happy Feet to Sperm Whales to Fishing Reports all of the focus was on the fish that were once safe from humans huddled at the bottom of the world. Here in Anarctica the the Plankton dissolves more Carbon Dioxide than all of the trees in the world!

I have little doubt that humans are about to eviscerate ANTARCTICA, the last stronghold of the Blue Planet.
The mighty Sperm Whale of Moby Dick fame and still recovering from Whaling will lose.

The Sperm Whale may have the largest brain that ever developed on Earth (20 lbs, human brains are 3lbs) but it won't save them.

Thanks to slow reproductive rates and countries like Japan who are desperate to resume whaling on a massive scale, the elimination of these perceived competitors will probably succeed. The Sperm and all other Whales will disappear as will the Penquins and eventually so will the fish that we all feed on...
and then us.

Most Scientists agree that all coastal fisheries are in serious trouble from overfishing and pollution. The deep virgin waters of Anarctica which are home to 2/3rds of the fish on the planet will be targeted to feed the 6.6 Billion humans.

Do you think that there is ANY chance that concerned countries will be able to police conservation efforts out in the middle of the Oceans?

21 comments:

  1. Anonymous11:47 AM

    not while humans have such short life spans. we are unwilling to address problems if we can't observe significant change in the space of 1 generation. we refuse to look at trends longer than 50 or so years and don't give a crap past the time when we, the current inhabitants, will be dead. I think if humans lived for 200 years we would all be much better off.

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  2. That was a very informative blog on the plight of our marine life.

    In response to your question of whether or not all countries can get together to police the waters, I would have to say that unless mankind discovers that it needs marine life to survive (much like it needs oxygen, good soil to grow food and clean water) I doubt that there will be much of an effort to save our great whales and other marine life.

    We're pretty selfish people,unfortunately, and unless marine life makes an impact on our lives I don't think much will be done.
    I mean really....We use the great killer whale for our amusement in theme parks. Isn't this an indication of how seriously we take all creatures of the sea?

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  3. I have a few questions about all these numbers...how can they be so sure they're accurate, for one.

    How do we know how many fish sperm whales eat and for that matter how many fish live at the bottom of the sea? Sonar, I assume.

    Still, it's all estimations.

    The human race has proven over and over again that it will consume everything it can get to in an economically feasible and sustaining manner that doesn't put its own existence in unreasonable peril.

    When they talk about depleted fishing resources, I believe they're referring to fish that are "worth it" to find and catch.

    So the waters of the Grand Banks of Newfoundland, once teeming with cod almost jumping out of the water, are now depleted.

    But to fish for that Manhattan-sized school of fish 3,000 feet down? Probably the return doesn't warrant the investment.

    I DON'T think we'll stop seeking out and finding and killing whatever we figure's within our reach.

    It's just the way we are.

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  4. Anonymous3:53 PM

    The REALLY important question is:

    How was the movie?

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  5. Anonymous5:12 PM

    The #1 comment has it succinctly. So now, please, answer Laura Elizabeth.
    PS Don't expect Australia to be much help;we can't keep tabs on our own territorial waters.Outboard-on-leaky-canoe trumps fast gunboat.

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  6. I so wanna see that movie!

    and thats my fav part of this post :)

    Keshi.

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  7. Anonymous6:32 PM

    I really don't want to see the movie. I don't want to see cute, animated, dancing penquins delivering messages nobody is going to listen to if it's going to screw with the menu at Red Lobster. What I want to see is a movie about a crew of ex-submariners somehow getting hold of a submarine and sinking these factory and whaling ships, using their experience and wit to avoid the navies of the world that will certainly come after them. THAT's the kind of "feel-good" movie I would like to see!

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  8. Anonymous8:42 PM

    I am kind of lost here! A new one for me!

    LOL!

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  9. Not because I am one, but vegetarianism is truly the way to go to obliterate world hunger and to stop depleting animal life on this planet as well as other life... problem is greed, greed, greed...

    On land, for example, the rainforest is being depleted by companies such as McDonald's and the like who slash and burn and cultivate crops for cows to feed on and these cows are later butchered and sold for food... but were we to use the actual crops, which when used grow again, more people could be fed than the one damn cow that feeds on so much crop to become prime meat... if I make any sense at all as it is early am and I am beat...

    So yeah, not into killing animals but if people want to do it and do it at a grass roots level we should be fine but on such a mass level our planet's resources are being depleted and wasted and we are doing the same with our seas...

    Very, very sad... we can fight to slow the process but true change has to come about by those in charge and well, unless they got some greens other than the natural kind in it for them I don't see that happening!

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  10. Anonymous4:13 AM

    miz b: acutally McDonald's (in the USA anyway) only uses American beef in their products. Burger King is the one buying beef from south america raised on land that used to be the Amazon rainforest. Boycott BK.

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  11. chaucer's bitch,
    If humans lived for 200 years wouldn't they do twice as much damage? I agree completely with you, we are totally myopic.

    scott,
    Hey how are you? We also use sea lions and porpoises/dolphins and pilot whales to retrieve military crap and search and rescue excercises.
    I have little doubt that Japan will keep buying votes from all of their poor carribean allies until they get their way. They only lost by 1 vote this year...1 vote!!!!!

    with2,
    Well they are guesstimates at best and Sperm Whales eat things that we normally wouldn't.
    Mankind will find a way to exploit any resource that he finds regardless of the consequences..the developing world will soon be so polluted that millions of people will simply die from infections...their rivers are already loaded with toxins now and the deforestation will continue until it's past the point of no return.
    I don't believe that humans will be able to wiggle out of this one''there are simply too many people.

    laura e,
    Give me two hours of Robin Williams and his little Argentinian Penquies..absolutely hilarious!
    The whole bad human thing was a real wet blanket at the end but the Animation is impossible to describe..simply beautiful..hope that you are up on your Pop tunes if you are going to see it..lots of music. My girls (19&21) liked it more than my 5 yr old..
    .'so yo it's like dat!'

    dinahmow,
    Like Canada, Australia has a lot of land and few people..which are their blessing and curse. We are being cjhallenged by the US about our northern borders..which we cannot possibly patrol..anyway the Americans will be up there getting Oil and Water whenever they like...there is nothing that we can do about it.

    keshi,
    You would love it because it is so cutesy and filled with music...it has some very funny and cool scenes..absolutely worth seeing..and you can bring a kid along to camouflage your intentions but you will like it more than the kid.

    THE michael,'
    that is an AWESOME idea for a movie..and a career! Talk about a vocation with growth potential..unlimited potential.
    Greenpeace meets the Terminator!
    I am calling my editor rfn!

    gautami,
    What do you mean lost?..you can just say bor-ing!
    ..that's OK.

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  12. mizzy bo!
    If it weren't for my HUGE canines, I look like avampire!, I would try to ease off of my 90% carrion diet. I know Iknow!
    If I had 4 stomachs like an ungulate I would seriously consider the veggie thing..lots of my daughter's friends are vegan so I have learned to love veggie pizzas anyway. I have watched The Meatrix a few times, look it up it;s a little animated piece on factory farming which I abhor..and our Province has more swine than people now!
    I think that animals should be allowed to live out regular lives before being sacrificed..as swiftly and painlessly as possible.
    In the end I have very little confidence that this little Ape that graduated from scavenging on the African Savannah to overwhelming the entire planet's resources will survive. Impossible to continue at our present rate...we could have done so much more. F*ck!

    chaucer's b,
    Is it just me or is the Burger KING abvsolutely creepy!? He gives me the willys!

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  13. No way, José, but don't worry we have a scientist over here who says that always a few people will survive when we have finally destroyed about everything, and then it all starts all over again. And just suppose that a matriarchal society arises that time, then maybe (just maybe, who knows) things will turn out differently.

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  14. Anonymous5:50 PM

    i thought that film looked retarded and i had no intention of seeing it until Fox News did a piece condemming it as a bunch of commie liberal propaganda. Now i'll go just to piss them off. I support anything Fox News is against.

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  15. We're just too greedy. It's quite disturbing just how destructive and careless we are.

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  16. Spot on what dinahmow said! haha.

    Fantasy: we go back to the days where people grew their own food and caught their own fish.

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  17. hildegarde,
    If a matriachal society evovles they will still need a few sex slaves in the harem..test tubes just won't cut it...or would they?
    My guess is that when we finally kill the Earth it will take thousands of years to recover and not one single human will survive...and if they did let's hope that they embrace their new Insect Overlords and make the most of it.

    Chaucer's bitch,
    That's the spirit. Even Bill O'Reilly will take his kids just so that he can rant about the global warming and overfishing myths. It wasn't as retarded as you think and it is always amazing to me when the protagonist in a children's movie somehow manages to have two parents...unlike Mr. Disney, that sadistic bastard!

    anna,
    Just think how scenic it will be 50 years from now when all of the major cities along the coast start to look like Venice and we are eating Soylent Green Salads...mmm...recycled human remains.

    Lee,
    Dinahmow is right and we Canucks are in the same boat. It would be weird if we all ended up back in little agrarian communities..go full circle..and then continue back to hunting and gathering..back up the trees..back to being nocturnal insectivores...oh yeah except for the fact that the Earth will be too scorched and polluted to support our regression.

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  18. Hi HE
    I did see the movie...and loved it!
    I even got in for free...
    as my son works at the theatre we went to!

    Great post...all that info...
    Thanks!

    Margie

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  19. Margie,
    My daughter works at the theatre and I got in for free too!!!
    Coinky-Dink?

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  20. **..and you can bring a kid along to camouflage your intentions but you will like it more than the kid.


    LOL I dun need to do that...Im the kid in any place :)

    ty HE!
    Keshi.

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  21. Any chance of that happening is zilch...there is no way theyre gonna sit watching a pot of gold swimming there. We must stop Japan n nowrway from stealing the oceans of these gentle giants. Maybe theyre still evolving this fishes, but if we overkill them, then there is no hope to feed the future generation. SO how do we stop this? Like it or not, we must eat farm fishes more to give chance to endangered species to come back strong. But for whales, the future is indeed bleak.

    ReplyDelete

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