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The effects of dynamite fishing

 

Tanzania is a top tourist destination for its beautiful wildlife. But a group of “dynamite fishermen,” fishermen who use explosives to kill large groups of fish, are destroying that wildlife and Tanzania’s reputation. They are blowing up large groups of dolphins at Tanga Coelacanth Marine Park to use as bait to catch sharks as part of the profitable shark fin trade.

There are several huge problems with this. First of all, dynamite fishing is extremely damaging in itself. The practice is illegal in many places because it kills thousands of marine animals in one blast and it destroys wide swaths of ocean including coral reefs.

Dolphins are protected in the marine park and also under Tanzanian fishing regulations. Tanga Coelacanth Marine Park was founded as a sanctuary to protect endangered marine life. Dolphins have been endangered for years due to being caught in nets and blasts in attempts to catch sharks and whales for meat. Dolphins are sought for their own meat less often, but some species are down to 100 individuals as a result of wide-range fishing. Dolphins, it should be noted, are believed to be the world’s second most intelligent animals next to primates. They have complex communication systems within their groups, and can recognize themselves in a mirror.

Sharks are even more endangered than dolphins. Most shark species have decreased drastically over the past 50 years due to shark finning, and the oceanic whitetip shark has seen its numbers decrease by over 99%.

Tourists noted the killings in horror, and the Tanzanian government is calling for fishermen to stop killing dolphins. Nobody is benefitting from this scenario except for the fishermen, who are out to destroy endangered dolphins, endangered sharks, and Tanzania’s GDP in one blast.

Dynamite fishing is already illegal in Tanzania, but we can call for shark and dolphin hunting to be outlawed too, in order to protect these endangered animals. Urge Dr. David Mathayo, Minister for Fisheries and Livestock Development in Tanzania, and Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete to support a ban on shark and dolphin hunting in Tanzania.

 

Learn more and sign the petition now at: http://forcechange.com/64031/outlaw-dolphin-and-shark-hunting-in-tanzania/

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Lee has been in the marketing industry for the last 15 years and now specializes in teaching marketing techniques to people in the scuba diving industry. He is founder of Dive Media Solutions which, in addition to providing complete marketing, media, communications and IT solutions exclusively for the scuba diving industry, also produces The Scuba News. You can connect with Lee via Twitter by following @DiveMedia

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