Tag Archives: Conservation

Shark Week and Sharks in Peril – help the sharks

Sharks are in trouble and need your help. The list of endangered shark species is depressingly long. Sharks are not only magnificent animals themselves but they also play a key role in the health of many marine ecosystems.

In this article Underwater Herald introduces  two resources where you can go to learn and do more: The “Sharks in Peril” project by Project Aware and “Shark Week”, which is not just a  TV event but has an extensive web site that you can access year around.

Angelshark (Squatina squatina) off Tenerife, C...
Angelshark (Squatina squatina) is one of the critically endangered shark species. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Shark Week

Discovery Channel organized its first Shark Week in 1987 and it is said to be the longest running cable television programming event in the history.

Shark Week may have started as a TV event but has grown way beyond that. The Shark Week 2014 TV event is still a few months away — in August — but the Shark Week web site is all you need to start learning about sharks and contributing to their protection. The site is full of information, videos and possibilities to contribute.  You can track the travels of your favorite shark live, make a virtual shark dive or watch a shark cam. You can also find a section full of Shark Week 2013 videos and information.

To take action to help sharks go the Save Sharks section of the site.
As you could expect, Shark Week is also on  Twitter and Facebook.

Mind you, there was controversy around Shark Week 2013 because some of the TV programming was overly dramatized. This takes little value away from the web site, however, and let us hope that in 2014 the Shark Week TV programming is documentary.

Sharks in Peril

Many divers have heard of Project AWARE, a divers’ movement to protect the ocean planet.  The Sharks in Peril project is a part of the wider Project AWARE movement.

The Sharks in Peril web pages are a good starting point for learning more about sharks and their need for protection. You can contribute through donations or by joining Project AWARE and participating local events for shark conservation. In the Resource Zone you can find more ways to contribute and do not forget to keep an eye on the Latest Updates section.

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Islamorada volunteers protecting marine life

Thumbs up, volunteers!

Gray Angelfish: Looe Key Reef, Florida Keys Na...
Gray Angelfish: Looe Key Reef, Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (Photo credit: Phil’s 1stPix)
Source: newsobserver.com
ISLAMORADA, Fla. — Back in the 1960s, University of Miami marine scientist Walter Starck recorded 517 species of fish in and around Alligator Reef off Islamorada – the greatest number recorded from any one place in the Americas at that time.

Today, following decades of human and natural impacts, this coral ledge topped by a lighthouse and fringed with rubble and sea grass still delights scientists and divers with its rich species diversity.

Islamorada underwater photographers Carlos and Allison Estape – volunteers with the nonprofit Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) – recently embarked on their own fish count at Alligator Reef, a no-take zone ever since the 1997 implementation of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary management plan. The couple is up to a little more than 100 species on a single dive, with the photographs to prove it. Lad Akins, longtime operations director for REEF, said the Upper Keys sanctuary preservation area is among only a few other known locations in the tropical Western Atlantic with a one-dive, 100-plus fish species count. Chief among them is the tiny island of Bonaire in the southern Caribbean.

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