Fishing gear equipment used by fishermen like gears, rods, lines, sinkers, nets, trap are causing a threat to marine species claiming the life of many whales, seals, turtles, and birds. The marine life present in Australia and New Zealand is facing the risk of death due to tonnes of fishing or ghost gear being released into oceans every year.
The Conservation Group World Animal Protection advises the global community to clear the oceans and remove all the nets, wire and traps that entangle whales, seals, turtles, and birds. This fishing gear is killing hundreds and thousands of marine species every year. According to recent estimates, more than 640,000 tonnes of fishing gear are left in the ocean every year and it stays there up to 600 years. This fishing gear traps more and more whales, seals, turtles, and birds causing the painful death.
According to WDC the fishing gears like rope and nets cause cuts and abrasions to the skin and clings to their body even more tightly resulting in deeper cuts. In the worst case the fins, the tail can be partly or totally separated due to tightening of nets. The dead bodies of dolphins have shown broken teeth, beak or jaws and dangerous internal injuries.
The World Animal Protection group is urging people to free the oceans from deadly entrapments by seeking the help from Samoan, Tuvalu and New Zealand governments.
The UN Ocean Conference which was held in New York was attended by group’s Ingrid Giskes to urge other nations including Australia to sign up the Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) which will clear the ocean by removing fishing gear, nets, lines, and traps. This UN conference is not just a talk but action, as there is a registry online attached to the conference, called A Register of Voluntary Commitment in which the countries pledge to take action on the marine waste which causes damage to marine life.
Although the process of removing all the fishing gear from oceans seems to be a ridiculous task the initiatives like GGGI can provide some help. Implementation of strict procedures can also protect whales, seals, turtles, and birds from damage.