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Conservationists promote establishment of mobile marine reserves by Elaine Murphy March 06,2012   |  Source: GreenAnswers

Conservationists have pitched a new idea that could save endangered marine animals, such as loggerhead and leatherback turtles, albatross, and sharks, from the threat of overfishing: establish mobile marine reserves as a flexible and effective way to protect the species. These protected areas’ boundaries would reflect the animals’ fluid migration patterns, which leave them in different spots in the ocean throughout the year.

The mobile marine reserves would use tracking devices to follow the populations of endangered animals, and would close the areas with the highest populations of the species to trawlers and industrial fishermen during peak seasons.

As ocean conditions change due to climate change-related factors, such as rising temperatures and ocean acidification, marine species migrate to different areas of the ocean. The regions where the species live can change according to ocean currents and climate, such as El Nino, so the boundaries of the marine reserves could be moved when the species migrates.

The proposal for the mobile marine reserves was brought forth at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual meeting in Vancouver, Canada, a science festival held earlier this month.

At the AAAS meeting, Prof. Larry Crowder of Stanford


© 2012 GreenAnswers.com LLC

Theme(s): Fisheries Resources.

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