Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Scientists call for protected 'swimways' for the endangered leatherback sea turtle

21.10.2008
8,000 scientists from 250 nations support resolution

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) World Conservation Congress this week adopted a resolution urging nations to protect the leatherback sea turtle and sharks from the world's industrial fisheries by identifying and creating marine protected areas along the Pacific leatherback's migratory routes.

More than 8,000 scientists, government officials and environmental organizations from over 250 nations overwhelmingly supported the resolution, which includes the "Cocos Ridge Marine Wildlife Corridor," designed to shield the critically endangered Pacific leatherback and the hammerhead shark from longline and gillnet fisheries. Recent satellite tracking data from Stanford University researchers shows that after nesting on the beaches in Playa Grande, Costa Rica, Pacific leatherbacks swim toward the Galapagos Islands.

See a copy of the IUCN resolution: http://portal.worldconservationcongress.org/motions/Motions%20Publication%20Library/028-EN-Conservation%20of%20leatherback%20turtles%20and%20hammerhead%20sharks%20in%20the%20eastern%20tropical%20Pacific%20marine%20corridor.pdf

Randall Arauz, President of Costa Rican-based PRETOMA that sponsored the resolution explained, "Our plan allows one of the largest reptiles on Earth to continue its 100-million-year-old existence by opening and closing portions of the migration corridor to fishing as turtles enter and exit the area." He added, "We believe this corridor is also used by other endangered species, such as hammerhead sharks and would benefit many other threatened marine species."

The resolution employs scientific recommendations based upon fieldwork and analyses by Stanford researcher, George Shillinger and an international team of co-authors who believe their work may make "adaptive" closures a realistic conservation approach, "These models will consider areas of highest risk/interaction with fisheries and provide governments and fisheries with the opportunity to protect leatherbacks as they move in real-time." In the recent study, Persistent Leatherback Turtle Migrations Present Opportunities for Conservation, Shillinger used satellite tracking and remote sensing to describe the effects of oceanography, such as ocean currents, phytoplankton distribution and sea-floor topography, on Pacific leatherbacks' distribution and movement; and then developed a model that could predict the presence or absence of the sea turtles. His work is part of the Census of Marine Life's (CoML) Tagging of Pacific Pelagics (TOPP) initiative, a multidisciplinary, international research program utilizing electronic tags to track the migrations of a variety of open ocean animals. Shillinger adds, "Now it's time to turn the high-tech science into political will and conservation action for critically endangered leatherbacks."

The last members of an ancient lineage that has outlived the dinosaurs, leatherback sea turtles are ocean giants that grow to the size of small automobiles, dive more than half a mile deep, and migrate across the entire Ocean basins to feed in the jellyfish-rich waters off the west coast of North and South AmericaLeatherbacks swim over 6,000 miles within a single year - the largest geographic range of any living marine reptile, and one of the longest known migrations for any marine species in the world.

"Leatherback sea turtles survived the asteroid that killed off the dinosaurs, but they are unlikely to survive our unsustainable appetite for swordfish and tuna," said Todd Steiner, Executive Director of the U.S.-based Turtle Island Restoration Network and a member of the IUCN Marine Turtle Specialist Group. "If leatherbacks are to survive the coming decades, we must convert talk to action; otherwise we will lose one of the most ancient creatures on the planet, in the next ten to thirty years."

Leatherback sea turtles in the Pacific Ocean have declined by more than 90% over the past three decades as a result of drowning in industrial longline and gillnet fisheries targeting swordfish, sharks, and tunas. Egg harvesting, marine plastic debris and loss of nesting beaches due to global warming-induced sea level rise also threaten the leatherback. If current trends continue, Pacific leatherbacks are predicted to go extinct within the next few decades.

George Shillinger | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.stanford.edu

Further reports about: Conservation IUCN Marine Pacific Pacific Ocean Turtle sea turtles

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Foxes in the city: citizen science helps researchers to study urban wildlife
14.12.2018 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien

nachricht Machine learning helps predict worldwide plant-conservation priorities
04.12.2018 | Ohio State University

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Data storage using individual molecules

Researchers from the University of Basel have reported a new method that allows the physical state of just a few atoms or molecules within a network to be controlled. It is based on the spontaneous self-organization of molecules into extensive networks with pores about one nanometer in size. In the journal ‘small’, the physicists reported on their investigations, which could be of particular importance for the development of new storage devices.

Around the world, researchers are attempting to shrink data storage devices to achieve as large a storage capacity in as small a space as possible. In almost...

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Pressure tuned magnetism paves the way for novel electronic devices

18.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

New type of low-energy nanolaser that shines in all directions

18.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA research reveals Saturn is losing its rings at 'worst-case-scenario' rate

18.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>