Overfishing

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Bycatch, the name given to fish and other ocean animals that are caught unintentionally, is a huge problem. Scientists and fishermen are joining forces to design new nets that catch only the targeted species,...
In the dark, cold waters 600 meters (nearly 2000 feet) below the ocean's...
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Since 1987, researchers have been tracking Phoenix, one of the last North...
A public service announcement uses a dramatic example to emphasize that ocean...

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The Oculina deep-sea coral reef at top has not been disturbed by humans—but trawling has devastated the one at bottom. When fishermen trawl, they drag a net along the seafloor, destroying everything in its path. Only about 10...
In recent years, blooms of jellyfish, such as these moon jellies ( Aurita...
One of the biggest threats to sea turtles, such as the loggerhead turtle (...

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by Caty Fairclough Sharks have been feared hunters ever since people first observed them swimming in the vast ocean. Yet...
Since 1987, researchers have been tracking Phoenix, one of the last North Atlantic right whales living today. It's estimated that there are fewer than 500 of these whales alive today. Read her story...
As a consumer, you can choose what kinds of seafood to buy. Some species are in good supply and make excellent choices. Others have declined dramatically due to overfishing or environmental factors...
The impacts of derelict fishing gear on the Northwest Hawaiian Islands coral reef ecosystem are numerous. A primary effect of reef entanglement is structural damage to the coral substrate that...
"Tens of millions of sharks are killed each year, often only for their fins. I have wrestled with how to take pictures of dead sharks that resonate with readers. One morning, I jumped into the sea in...
This roughly 300 foot long gill net was found abandoned on a shallow reef in the surf zone on Oahu, Hawaii. The net had trapped parrotfish, wrasses, goatfish, surgeonfish, coral crabs, spiny lobsters...
Sunday, November 21 marks World Fisheries Day , an annual occasion observed in many fishing communities around the world. It’s a great opportunity—even for those of us who do not fish for a living—to...
Bycatch, the name given to fish and other ocean animals that are caught unintentionally, is a huge problem. Scientists and fishermen are joining forces to design new nets that catch only the targeted...
Worldwide, fisheries touch our lives in countless ways. If well maintained, they can feed millions of people, generate jobs and income, help maintain long-standing community and cultural traditions,...
by Caty Fairclough Sharks have been feared hunters ever since people first observed them swimming in the vast ocean. Yet today, sharks are declining rapidly on a global scale because humans have...
Salmon are one of the most widely loved varieties of seafood in the world. A ubiquitous alternative to meat and poultry, salmon wear a halo of healthfulness, as they are rich in protein and omega-3...
These statistics come from a United Nations Food & Agriculture Organization 2007 review of the status of global fish stocks. Learn more in our Sustainable Seafood section .
In recent years, blooms of jellyfish, such as these moon jellies ( Aurita aurita ) in the Chesapeake Bay, have become more common around the world for a number of different reasons . One result of...
When snorkeling in the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA) in West Maui, I keep an eye out for certain kinds of fish. Not the brightest or the biggest, but those herbivores such as...
Calling all fans of Bravo's "Top Chef" reality show: the Smithsonian Resident Associate Program is hosting Demystifying Seafood , a wine and dine event at the National Museum of Natural History on...
Buyers examine tuna lining the floor of Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo, Japan. Ounce per ounce, tuna is one of the most valuable varieties of seafood. In 2012, a single 593lb bluefin tuna sold for $736...
A North Atlantic right whale with a deep wound caused by entanglement in fishing gear floats at the surface in the Bay of Fundy on August 1, 1999. Crew members on the International Fund for Animal...
Who should fear whom? Less than ten humans are killed by shark attacks. Yet millions of sharks are killed each year by humans. More about the great white shark can be found in our Great White Shark...
When people go out fishing, they often have something specific in mind, but it's very difficult to catch only what you're looking for. Pulling a net through the water or across the sea floor catches...
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