Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Silver bullets?

Charlie recently posted about the hazards posed by longlines to albatrosses. Now I love longlines and it would make me very happy to see longliners using the flared ribbony things they can use to stop albatrosses and other birds hitting the baits as they are deployed. Here's one of the other costs of longlines, although its not collateral damage; its one of the main targets - a yellowfin tuna:

tuna 2

Looks a little different to the can on the kitchen shelf doesn't it? At6 feet long and capable of prodigous speeds to perhaps 60mph, yellowfin are in better shape than some of their close relatives. Bluefin for example take 8 years to reach spawning age and can live for 40 years. They are now being "farmed" but the reality is they are just caught on mass and fattened up.

What I would refer to as the great pelagic fish; tuna, billfish and the pelagic sharks are almost all under threat and are often slow to recover. They can also contain rather dodgy levels of mercury by virtue of their place in the food chain. By choosing sustainable fisheries and rewarding them with our cash we can help protect these species for the future and tuck into tasty fish so please consider it and if you do eat it - treat it right with the respect the tuna deserves. Is it really worth killing dolphins, turtles, albatrosses and petrels to put this magnificent creature into a 3 inch can before washing away its distinctive flavour in a sandwich with cheap mayo and some nasty bleached bread?

PS: apologies for the preachy bit - this posts been festering whilst I waited for my computer problems to subside.

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