Friday, April 28, 2017

Week in Review: Tens of Thousands "March for Science", Global Fishing Goes Unreported, Baby Humpbacks Whisper and More....

1. Tens of Thousands "March for Science" Around the World--There is No Planet B

March for Science Washington DC
This past Earth Day, April 22, 2017, tens of thousands of scientists and concerned citizens marched for science all around the world.  Over 600 cities participated. This non-partisan gathering rallied for funding for science research and celebrated science. Many clever signs were carried, including "The oceans are rising, and so are we."



                                                      
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2. A Third of Global Fishing Goes Unreported

fishing vessel

Research from the University of British Columbia’s The Sea Around Us projects suggests that up to a third of global fishing goes unreported.  The United Nations reported that 81.2 million tons were harvested from the oceans in 2015.  Researchers say fifty percent more than that is taken from the oceans each year.
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3. Baby Whales “Whisper” to Mother to Not Alert Predators


humpback mother and breaching calf
Scientists in Western Australia studied the sounds baby whales make to their mothers.  They found that the babies communicated with softer squeaks and grunts, presumably not to attract attention from predators such as killer whales. The scientists also found that the baby whales rub against their moms instead of vocalizing when wanting to nurse. Shipping noise could potentially be louder than the soft vocalizations of the mother calf pairs and be a problem now and in the future.
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4. The People's Climate March


People's Climate March
The People’s Climate March will take place on Saturday, April 29 in Washington D.C. along with sister marches in hundreds of cities around the world. Organizers are prepared for 50,000-100,000 people. This march is meant to be more political than the previous weekend’s March for Science, which was non-partisan.  It falls on Trump’s 100th day in office.  The first People’s Climate March took place in New York during the eve of the United Nations Climate Summit in September of 2014.
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5. Could Plastic-Eating Caterpillars Result in Pollution Metamorphosis?


plastic eating caterpillar

A Spanish biologist found while beekeeping that the wax moth, a type of caterpillar, ate plastic from plastic bags.  Teaming up with scientists, she found that the caterpillars were indeed digesting the plastic.  The caterpillars ate more plastic than a certain type of bacteria previously discovered. This could help the environment tremendously, as much plastic ends up in the oceans. Read More…
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6. Whale and Boat Collisions are More Common Than Thought


collision strike on whale

A study of whales in the Gulf of Maine has found that collisions with whales and boats is more common than thought before.  Fifteen percent of whales in the study had “injuries or scarring consistent with at least one vessel strike.”  Scientists believe that number is an underestimate of actual collisions, and doesn’t include whales killed by vessel strikes.
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7. Navy Re-creates Hagfish Slime for Many New Uses


synthetic hagfish slimeThe US Navy has synthetically reproduced Pacific hagfish slime for uses as varied as a shark deterrent and fighting fires.  The hagfish naturally produces slime for protection as it plugs the gills of its potential predators.  It is similar in nature to kevlar, which is used in reinforcing rubber products and for protective gear.  The slime may be used “for ballistics protection, firefighting, anti-fouling, diver protection, or anti-shark spray.”
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8. Arctic Ocean Dead End for Plastic Pollution

plastic litter in Arctic

The Greenland and Barents Seas in the Arctic are a dead end for plastics caught in a gyre.  Scientists did net tows and from that estimated that there is 110-1,323 tons or 300 billion pieces of plastic in that area of the Arctic.  All studies regarding plastic pollution are important as it is estimated that there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish by 2050.
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Sea Save Foundation is committed to raising awareness of marine conservation. The Week in Review is a team effort produced by the Sea Save staff to provide a weekly summary of the latest in marine research, policy, and news.

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