Sunday, 20 November 2011

Tuna industry whistleblower reveals whale shark slaughter

SHOCKING video of whale sharks, rays and whales being slaughtered by tuna fishermen has been released by an industry whistleblower.

The never-before-seen footage shows protected marine life caught as bycatch, then killed after being lured into massive purse-seine nets by Fish Aggregating Devices, nicknamed death magnets.

The whistleblower, who worked as a spotter onboard a tuna fishing boat in the Pacific said marine species, such as dolphins, manta rays, marlin and whales, were caught almost every time FADs were deployed.  
Greenpeace Ocean Campaigner Nathaniel Pelle said the majority of canned tuna eaten in Australia is caught in this manner.

WA shoppers eat more canned tuna than any other seafood, despite evidence that overfishing has pushed stocks into serious decline, with some on the brink of collapse.
Mr Pelle is urging WA consumers to demand retailers stock more sustainable tuna varieties, such as Safcol, which sources tuna not caught using FADs or purse-seine nets.

“Greenseas should be congratulated for recently pledging to stop using FAD-caught tuna by 2015, but that’s several years away,” Mr Pelle said.

“Brands like John West, Coles and Woolworths have refused to make any such commitments.”

Woolworths' media relations manager Benedict Brook said the company offer pole and line caught tuna in its private label brands.

"It is disappointing that Greenpeace has chosen to ignore this fact," Mr Brook said.

On its website John West states it is committed to supplying products that ensure the sustainability of marine resources. Their product compiles with dolphin safe requirements and they are part of the Marine Stewardship Council which works to ensure fish stocks are managed for the future.

Read more here ...

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