03/25/22 Overfishing is Devastating Seas and Oceans
Animal Friends Croatia calls for marking the World Day for the End of Fishing
- Bottom trawling in Croatia plays a significant role in the destruction of the Adriatic Sea ecosystem
The World Day for the End of Fishing is marked on the 26th of March, aiming to draw attention to the well-being of aquatic animals, such as fish, crabs, octopi, turtles and sea mammals. “They are sentient and intelligent creatures with their own life purpose, having an effect on human life, as well as our survival on this planet”, appealed Animal Friends Croatia. The Association will mark this day by sharing shocking information and data concerning Croatia.
In Croatia, serious problems are caused by bottom trawling fishing which, due to its non-selective nature, results in the killing of all aquatic animals that come in the way: crabs, mollusks, echinoderms and cephalopods. In addition, with a bulldozer-like effect, bottom trawling devastates and destroys the entire seabed causing tremendous damage.
Scientists have calculated the effect of bottom trawling on climate change and discovered that, on average, this fishing method produces one gigatonne of carbon every year. The destructive practice of bottom trawling disturbs the sea bottom and releases part of the carbon inside of it, which microbes then decompose and turn into carbon monoxide that is subsequently released from the sea into the air, adding to the global warming”, says Trisha Atwood of the University of Utah.
National Geographic Society’s Enric Sala warned that ocean life has been impoverished due to excessive fishing, climate change and damage done to sea habitats. The European Environment Agency has announced that Croatia is among the countries most affected by adverse aspects of climate change.
Animal Friends Croatia points out that, every day, fishing boats worldwide kill more than three billion aquatic animals, whereas sport and game fishing kill additional 245 million animals every year. The agony, which can last for up to four hours on fishing boats, causes extreme suffering for these sentient and intelligent animals. Apart from targeted fish species, the trawling nets collect other animals such as birds, sharks, turtles, octopi and mollusks, the so-called bycatch. Scientists have recently established that almost 1000 sea mammals die every year after they get unintentionally caught in fishing nets. According to WWF data, as much as 38 million tonnes of sea organisms are captured as bycatch per year, which is 40% of the total global marine fisheries catches.
“Fishing industry kills hundreds of billions of animals every year and it has decimated the sea and ocean ecosystems. Moreover, 90% of a large fish population has been made extinct over the last 50 years, and it is estimated that, should we continue with this cruel practice, no more fish will be left in the oceans by the end of 2048,” warn Animal Friends Croatia.
“By stopping the consumption of fish and other aquatic animals, we can significantly contribute to the reduction and ban of cruel fishing practices, increase in the ocean biodiversity and reduction of the negative impacts of climate change,” concludes Animal Friends Croatia.