Wednesday, October 31, 2007

And the winner is . . . .

Oceana announced the winner of the freaky fish voting:

The polls are closed, the votes are tallied and the winner is (drum roll please): the red lipped batfish! No word if this bottom dweller is doing the Time Warp on the seafloor in celebration of the win, but one thing's for sure, the fish with the crimson kisser would be a shoo in for the aquatic rendition of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Also known as the Galapagos batfish, this oddball is a poor swimmer that spends an abundance of time "walking" on its pectoral fins. In addition to its freaky walking ability, its body is covered in gnarled lumps, so it's no wonder this warm water species looks like it's wearing lipstick -- how else could it get a date?

It was a close competition with creatures like the patagonian toothfish, the phantom anglerfish and the wretched, fearsome tubeworm fighting the good fight through the final stretch. But in the end the red lipped batfish pervailed.


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Need info?

MarineBio's page on "relevant journals" lists 81 "scientific journals we recommend and periodically review for information concerning marine life."

In addition, the page contains a link to the Directory of Open Access Journals, a searchable database service covering "free, full text, quality controlled scientific and scholarly journals. There are now 1642 journals in the directory. Currently 413 journals are searchable at article level. As of today 75605 articles are included in the DOAJ service."

Happy searching in journals ranging from the Journal of Biology to Coral Reefs - Journal of the International Society for Reef Studies!


Monday, October 29, 2007

REEF launches new Web site.

The Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF)is a grass-roots organization that seeks to conserve marine ecosystems by educating, enlisting and enabling divers and other marine enthusiasts to become active ocean stewards and citizen scientists.

REEF's newly designed Web site makes access easier to all of the site's data and REEF's excellent programs.


Friday, October 26, 2007

Vote for freaky fish

From the Web site of Oceana:

A few weeks ago, we asked our WaveMakers to nominate ocean creatures for our second annual Halloween-inspired Freakiest Fish competition. We offer a big thanks to everyone who submitted a nominee, and although we reviewed many excellent options, our Marine Freakiness Committee (also known as the "Barometer o' Freak") selected the nominees below as the Top 10 finalists. We had a ton of fun learning about these creatures, and we hope you do too. Now get your freak on, and go vote!
I voted for the Red Lipped Batfish (Ogcocephalus darwini) over the other nominees: Deep Sea Black Dragonfish (Grammatostomias flagellibarba); Denise’s Pygmy Seahorse (Hippocampus Denise); Goblin Shark (Mitsukurina owstoni); Devil Scorpionfish (Scorpaenopsis diabolus); Great Hammerhead Shark (Sphyrna mokarran); Patagonian Toothfish (Dissostichus eleginoides); Phantom Anglerfish (Haplophryne mollis); Tubeworms (Riftia pachyptila).

However, none of these even come close to last year's winner, the Blobfish (Psychrolutes marcidus):


Thursday, October 25, 2007

Survey on communications for marine wildlife

From the Coral-List listserve:

This is a second invite to participate in a very brief online survey on "Communicating Science for Conservation of Marine Wildlife." The survey was designed to investigate attitudes and opinions of those involved in the marine wildlife field regarding how scientific results are applied in the conservation of marine wildlife. The results of the survey will be used to help improve the effectiveness of communications regarding marine wildlife conservation issues. All responses are anonymous unless you indicate that you are willing to be contacted to answer some follow-up questions.

Thanks to all of you who have participated so far, the response rate has been great!

The survey will close at the end of this month, and your participation would greatly contribute to the results. Notice of this survey has been posted on several marine wildlife-related listserves, including Coral-list (corals), C-TURTLE (sea turtles), Fish-Sci (fisheries), MARMAM (marine mammals), and seabird (seabirds and marine ornithology). Our apologies if you have received multiple copies of this email as a result of cross-postings.

Link to survey.

Vicki Cornish (
Raychelle Daniel ( Ocean Conservancy, Washington, DC USA 202-429-5609


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Ambitious inventory of marine life

From an article by Zilia Castrillón on the Inter Press Service:

BOSTON, Oct 19 (IPS/IFEJ) - The inclusion of coral on the Red List of Threatened Species 2007 -- of the World Conservation Union (IUCN) -- is the first result of an ambitious marine life observation project, one that has goals of global conservation.

The decision to add corals to the Red List was based on studies begun a little more than a year ago by the Global Marine Species Assessment (GMSA), a joint effort of IUCN and Conservation International.

Ten species of coral in Ecuador's Galápagos Islands -- two in critical danger of extinction and one vulnerable -- have been included on the Red List, the most detailed guide to the global state of conservation -- or decline -- of plants and animals.

This is the first in a series of assessments and additions to the list focused on marine species around the world, said Kent Carpenter, coordinator of GMSA, based in the biological sciences department of Old Dominion University, in the eastern U.S. state of Virginia.

GMSA compiles information about all known species of vertebrates and of a selection of invertebrates and plants, and adds them to the IUCN's Species Information Service database.

The experts responsible for the project hope to have detailed data on the status of 20,000 marine species from around the world by 2010, and thus determine the relative risk of extinction of each one according to the Red List's criteria and categories.

So far, there are just 1,530 marine species among the 41,415 flora and fauna species included on the Red List this year in the various categories, ranging from "extinct" to "not evaluated". According to the GMSA scientists, sea life has not been adequately studied.

"The marine world has been relatively little studied and explored in comparison with land species," said Stuart Banks, oceanographer with the Charles Darwin Foundation, in an interview.


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Opportunities for shark research at Bimini Bahamas, 2007 and 2008

From the

Volunteer positions at the Bimini Biological Field Station (Sharklab) will be available through the year starting in November 2007 through December 2008.

If you have a biological background or interest in shark biology and wish to join the research team either as a volunteer or project leader (PhD candidate or Post Doc)--for a minimum of one month--please contact Dr. Gruber at with a copy to Kat Gledhill (Station Manager) at Please also visit our website at for details about the station, our research and courses.

For the coming season we are collaborating with marine biologists from universities in the US, UK and Canada and will be conducting field research on the population dynamics and behavior of young lemon sharks (*Negaprion brevirostris*) using long line collections, visual census, telemetry-tracking and monitoring as well as observation and experiments on captive animals. A second, continuing project concerning quantitative genetics and reproductive biology will involve intensive tagging and collection of DNA from the 2008 cohort of lemon sharks born at Bimini lagoon and elsewhere.

In addition to the Bimini site, lemon shark projects are underway at the Marquesas Keys, and Jupiter Florida. We are also hoping to continue our research on ecosystem dynamics of lemon shark nurseries including GIS and Ecopath analysis; and broaden our genetic studies. PhD candidates who have completed their course work are encouraged to contact us. Small stipends to cover some travel and living expenses in the Bahamas as well as equipment and supplies are available to successful candidates.

Cordially Yours,
Samuel H. Gruber
Director BBFS and Professor Emeritus
Katie (Kat) Gledhill
Lab Manager
Bimini Biological Field Station
Bimini, Bahamas


Monday, October 22, 2007

Coastal habitats are most imperiled ecosystems

From an article by posted on Science Daily:

ScienceDaily (Oct. 21, 2007) — The BBVA Foundation’s Third Debate on Conservation Biology allowed leading international experts to present findings of their latest research into the scale, causes and consequences of global loss of coastal habitats. The disappearance of these ecosystems, which include coral reefs, mangrove forests, wetlands and seagrass meadows, has serious consequences like loss of biodiversity, depletion of exploitable living resources, impaired capacity of the oceans to sequester CO2 and loss of the leisure value of the coastal zone. Not only that, the coastline becomes more vulnerable to the increased erosion associated with rising sea levels.

Carlos Duarte, researcher at the Spanish Council for Scientific Research and coordinator of the debate, informed the public that “coastal habitats are disappearing at a rate of between 1.2% and 9% a year and are now the biosphere’s most imperiled systems, with rates of loss 4 to 10 ten times faster than those of the tropical rainforest.”

The causes of these losses are many and include “the rapidly growing population of coastal zones, currently home to 60% of the planet’s inhabitants, along with the urban development, infrastructure works and ecosystem destruction this growth entails.” Also, increased discharges of nitrogen, phosphorus and organic matter have caused the deterioration of waters and sediments in many of the world’s coastal zones. . . .

Increased loadings of nitrogen and phosphorus due to coastal urbanization and the use of agricultural fertilizers are eroding the environmental quality of all coastal ecosystems, with tropical systems especially affected.


Sunday, October 21, 2007

Enjoy Roatan before the ships arrive

From an article by in the Bay Islands Voice:

While Cruise Terminal in Coxen Hole bogs down in delays, the island is looking at a 10-fold cruise traffic increase over the next 6-10 years.

With Roatan due to turn into a major cruise ship destination, two cruise ship terminals with three to five docks are in preparation to begin construction. While Carnival is doing depth studies for two dock locations in Dixon Cove, Royal Caribbean's dock concession in Coxen Hole has hit some major delays. Royal Caribbean was promised a 30-year terminal contract with all necessary environmental permits, but what they have gotten is a headache of fighting with government regulations.

After breaking ground in December 2006, the work hit a couple of major speed bumps. First, between February 26 and March 9, Ministry of Mining held up work on the dock when Diamond Rock, Roatan's only rock, boulder supplier and subcontractor on the dock project, was shut down because the company never had a proper mining permit. In the meantime, no filling in could be done on the site. While mining permits were eventually issued, another even longer delay began in July when Ministry of the Environment (SERNA) permit for filling in the terminal's western portion, around 40% of the site, didn't materialize.

The existence of coral on the fill-in site caused a halt to the fill-in process. The only way to proceed was to make changes to Honduras' environmental laws. These changes are still in progress as the president had to approve them and congress had to pass and ratify the law before publishing it in La Gazeta. Finally SERNA has to OK it. "We are in a holding pattern," said Ernan Bartez, General Manager of the Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Terminal, who believes that the good will on the side of the government will make things happen in the end.


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Successful beach clean-up

From the newsletter of Centro Ecológico Akumal:

October 6 was International Beach Clean-up Day. It was a great event with many people participating. Children, locals and tourists joined us at 8 a.m. at the CEA Information Center, were divided into teams and came back with 155 kilos of garbage, 95 being recyclable and 60 non-recyclable. Local businesses provided us with food and beverages for the whole crew.

We had our traditional drawing, sand sculpture and beach football contests. The kids had fun while learning, enjoying the beauty of our bay. They also snorkeled in the allowed areas, wearing lifejackets, in groups of 8 children and 2 guides, not approaching the corals or other species, but just watching them and enjoying floating on the sea.

This day was a very good example of how well we can work together to protect Akumal today so we may have our paradise alive tomorrow.

Thanks to everyone who made this day happen: MiniSuper Chomak, El Pueblito, La Cueva del Pescador, Turtle Bay Café and Bakery, Akumal Dive Shop, Akumal Dive Center, Las Casitas Akumal, Hotel Vista del Mar, La Buena Vida, La Boutique, Oshun Joya, Ixchel Boutique, and Leticia Cordova.


Friday, October 19, 2007

Celebrate Halloween with contribution to stop scary threats

Celebrate autumn, Halloween, Day of the Dead, Thanksgiving, and winter holidays with a donation to Centro Ecológico Akumal.

In October CEA will continue to struggle with the scary threats to the coastal and marine ecosystem in the Mexican Riviera; then, in November, CEA will give thanks for the natural beauty the planet offers; and, finally, in December CEA will give the gifts of its time and energy to protect the Mesoamerican paradise into the future.


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Small-scale fishing threatens loggerheads

From a press release issued by the Ocean Conservancy:

Washington, DC — Ocean Conservancy Scientist, Wallace J. Nichols and University of California (UC)-Santa Cruz researcher Hoyt Peckham found surprising results in a recent peer-reviewed loggerhead sea turtle study that Nichols and Peckham conducted over the course of 10 years. The full study will be released on October 17th. The study reveals that small-scale fishing operations are a greater threat to the survival of north Pacific loggerhead sea turtles than large industrial fishing operations.

The species is seriously threatened. As The New York Times recently editorialized, “For an oceanic species such as the loggerhead, these are incredibly dangerous times. It is partly the longevity of these creatures that makes their death as bystanders among the global fishing fleets feel so tragic, a truly colossal waste of life.”


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Mayan women turn cenote dump into tourist dollars

From a story by Sara Miller Llana in The Christian Science Monitor:

Yokdzonot, Mexico - The name of this town in the Mayan language means "above the cenote," but for years the cenote, or freshwater pool, in the middle of this tiny community of 500 operated as the neighborhood garbage dump.

And then a group of middle-aged women here, looking for more work in a town where most families merely subsist on crops they grow on small pots of land, decided to capitalize on the growing craze for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving among the sinkholes that dot the tourist circuit throughout Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula.

The men called them foolish, and as the group of 25 cut through the jungle with machetes, the other women shook their heads. They hiked 20 meters down to the water's edge, dragging out glass bottles and plastic bags, one by one. They hiked up into the mountains to bring back flat stones to create foot paths, and cut down wood to create rails. The whole effort took more than a year.

"We are all housewives," says Mirna Yolanda Mendez, a mother of four, standing at the Yokdzonot Ecological Park and Cenote, which opened this winter. It is fringed by lush vines. The water is crystal clear, revealing brightly-hued fish below. On a recent day a family splashed around a dock anchored in the middle. "No one believed we could do it," says Ms. Mendez. . . .

Today homemade signs on the highway invite visitors to take a swim. The cenote is still a work in progress. The group takes shifts managing the new tourist attraction: cleaning, handling the $2 entrance fees, or cooking in a small palm-covered restaurant that they built adjacent to the cenote. For now, the group invests most of the money they earn into maintaining the small park and cenote.
The health of the reefs along the Yucatán depends on clean cenotes, because sewage, chemicals, and other pollutants thrown into cenotes will eventually find its way to the Caribbean.


Monday, October 15, 2007

Hurricane season puzzles experts

From a Reuters' story by Michael Christie posted on the Planet Ark Web site:

MIAMI - Judge the 2007 Atlantic hurricane season by the 13 storms so far, and it looks like a relatively busy year. But look at the number of days a hurricane has swirled in the Atlantic, or use other measures of a storm season's ferocity, and 2007 has been surprisingly benign.

Hurricane experts had predicted the season to be above-average because of warm Atlantic sea surface temperatures, the continuance of a decades-long natural period of increased storm activity, and the development of La Nina weather conditions in the Pacific.

Many tropical waves, often a precursor of a tropical storm, developed in the Atlantic over the busiest weeks of the season between September and early October, and eight named tropical storms formed in September -- matching a record for the month.

But apart from maximum-strength Hurricane Felix, which slammed into Central America on Sept. 4, most were exceedingly brief or weak, meaning September only registered 3.5 days with a hurricane.

One noted hurricane forecasting team at Colorado State University had predicted 20 hurricane days that month.

This year's storms caused relatively little damage and casualties especially compared to the havoc inflicted in 2005, when Hurricane Katrina flooded New Orleans, Wilma pummeled the Mexican resort of Cancun and Florida, and Rita hit the Texas-Louisiana border area.

The main reason for the low number of hurricane days this year has been high vertical wind shear -- the difference in windspeeds at different altitudes -- which tears storms apart while they try to form, hurricane experts said.

Scientists are puzzled. A periodic cooling in sea temperatures in the eastern equatorial Pacific, known as La Nina, is supposed to reduce shear over the Atlantic.

"It's like everything else with hurricanes; every now and then the scientists just have to scratch their heads," said Jeff Masters, co-founder of the Weather Underground Web site.


Sunday, October 14, 2007

The best home page intro on the Web

Ocean Spirits' animated introduction to its Web site has to be one of the best on the Web. I enjoy watching it over and over. Check it out here.

Ocean Spirits is a non-profit conservation organization based in Grenada.


Saturday, October 13, 2007

Costa Rica expropriates land to protect turtles

From a story by John McPhaul posted on Reuters' Web site:

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (Reuters) - Costa Rican President Oscar Arias has ordered the expropriation of lucrative beach-front land to protect the endangered leatherback sea turtle, the government said on Thursday.

Arias began expropriation procedures for some 30 hectares (74 acres) of land in northwestern Costa Rica, the most important leatherback sea turtle nesting site on the Pacific Rim, Energy and Environment Minister Roberto Dobles said.

"We are only complying with the law that established Las Baulas (national marine park) in 1995," Dobles told Reuters.

Some of the expropriated land owners, mostly Europeans and U.S. citizens, had resisted the expropriation even though the land was made a national park by law in 1995.

Environmentalists hailed the move to protect the turtles, which have been declining in alarming numbers in recent years.


Friday, October 12, 2007

U.S. to Caribbean: Reduce loans by preserving reefs, forests

From a story by William E. Gibson in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:

WASHINGTON - Backed by ocean research groups in Florida, Congress is poised to give developing nations in the Caribbean and elsewhere a chance to pay off some of their debt to the United States by preserving forests and coral reefs.

Every dollar that qualified nations spend to preserve these fragile ecosystems would reduce their debt by a dollar under a bill passed by the House on Tuesday evening and cleared for passage in the Senate.

"This bill is truly a win-win-win situation," Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, told the House. He and co-sponsor Mark Kirk, R-Ill., say it would help friendly nations in the Caribbean, South America and Asia while nurturing the environment.

"By providing incentives for developing nations to conserve their coral resources, we are in effect protecting coastal landscapes and maintaining coastal quality of water of some of the most important coral reef ecosystems in the world," Hastings said.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Training Workshop on Coral Damage Assessment, Restoration and Monitoring

From the Web site of the International Coral Reef Initiative:

Training Workshop on Coral Damage Assessment, Restoration and Monitoring
La Parguera, Puerto Rico
December 4-5, 2007

Background: Cumulative impacts from small boat anchors, recurring recreational boat groundings and larger incidents, such as the April 2006 grounding of the oil tanker Margara near Tallaboa, Puerto Rico, demonstrate the need to prepare for and respond to the physical destruction of coral reefs, sea grasses and associated habitats. In response to this need, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is organizing a training workshop on coral damage assessment, restoration and monitoring for resource managers in the wider Caribbean region. The workshop will be conducted by NOAA specialists responsible for assessing, restoring and monitoring damaged coral, sea grass and mangrove habitats in NOAA's national marine sanctuaries. In addition to building capacity, the workshop organizers hope to promote consistent assessment, restoration and monitoring protocols and technique s to facilitate information and personnel exchanges across jurisdictions during major impact events. . . .

To apply: For more information, please contact Joe Schittone, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (, 301-713-7265). To apply to the workshop, please submit a one-page summary of your qualifications and responsibilities and describe how the workshop will enhance your coral reef management responsibilities.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Second annual freaky fish contest

Oceana seeks entries for its annual freaky fish contest:

This Halloween, we’d like to pay homage to this ghoulishly delightful day by celebrating the creepy, crawly critters of the deep – the ones that are too bizarre to live on land.

Last year, we crowned the blobfish the Freakiest Fish of 2006. This year’s winner is up to YOU.

Tell us why your fish is freaky using the form posted here, and our freaky experts will narrow down the contenders. Get your friends to vote for your fish starting October 10, and the winner will be announced this Halloween.

If your fish wins, you’ll be entered into a special Halloween raffle.
Read more about the blobfish (Psychrolutes marcidus) on Wikipedia.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Locals left behind by Mexico beach boom

From an article by Sara Miller Llana in the The Christian Science Monitor:

Playa del Carmen, Mexico - Rosalio Mezo dips his feet in the Caribbean Sea and points from one end of Xpu-Ha Bay to the next. There used to be nothing along this inlet, he says, save a few fishermen's homes and the jungle.

Now a 200-room hotel stands to his right; a 700-room resort to his left. In fact, along this stretch of shore south of Cancún called the Mayan Riviera, developers are devouring land in a boom that has made this region, by many accounts, the fastest-growing in Latin America.

Once a swath of small fishing communities made up of simple, palm-covered homes like that of Mr. Mezo, this coastline has become the trendy new vacation spot as Cancún has morphed into a concrete jungle of high-rise hotels. Now the number of hotel rooms along this strip on the Yucatán Peninsula's eastern coast has surpassed that of Cancún.

Critics say the transformation is threatening fragile ecosystems (such as the region's mangrove forests), exceeding the capacity of the current infrastructure, and forever changing the area's tranquil way of life. Tourism and local officials say they are planning responsibly and providing an alternative to Mexicans who might otherwise head to the US in search of employment.


Monday, October 8, 2007

Buckets of baby turtles rescued

From a report on

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Daytona Beach, Fla. -- Buckets filled with hundreds of baby turtles were rescued over the weekend after they were unable to make it out to the sea because of rough waters off the coast of Central Florida.

Officials with the Marine Science Center said the green sea turtles and loggerhead sea turtles were at risk because a tropical system located off the coast.

"The turtles started arriving about a week ago," said Michelle Bauer, sea turtle rehab specialist. "We've received more than 600 this weekend. Mostly green sea turtles and loggerheads are coming in. We've had two Kemps Ridley turtles come in as well."

The Volusia County Marine Science Center cares for injured sea turtles, freshwater and terrestrial turtles, injured sea birds and nonreleasable hawks and owls, wood storks, pelicans, and seagulls.

"Most have arrived in relatively good shape," said Bauer. "Unfortunately, we lost some hatchlings. Some were just too far gone to be saved and some arrived dead. We've seen turtles ranging from hatchling to about 2 months old. . . ."


Sunday, October 7, 2007

Puerto Rico preserves beach from development

From an Associated Press story on MSNBC:

LUQUILLO, Puerto Rico - Against the backdrop of a pristine coastline, Gov. Anibal Acevedo Vila signed an order Thursday to preserve a white-sand beach fringed with tropical forest where proposals for hotel resorts sparked widespread protests.

The 3,240 acres of public and private land, including a gently sloping beach used as a nesting area by endangered leatherback sea turtles, will become a nature reserve with the possibility for small-scale ecotourism ventures.

"We recognize the ecological and ecotourism value of the area," Acevedo said.


Saturday, October 6, 2007

Nominate an "unsung hero" of reef research or conservation

From: Jim Hendee
Subject: [Coral-List] "Unsung Heroes" of Coral Reef Research and/or Conservation
To: Coral-List Subscribers

I would like to put together a Web presence for the "unsung heroes" of coral reef research and/or conservation, in time for the International Year of the Reef in 2008. Ideally, the various nominees...

1) ...represent a person or group that you feel has contributed significantly to preserving coral reef ecology, but who has not received much recognition (whether or not they feel they deserve or want it).
2) ...all together would represent coral reef areas that are both remote, as well as heavily visited, in all three oceans.
3) ...don't mind sharing pictures of themselves as well as their endeavors!

If you have such people or groups in mind, please send me a paragraph describing why you think they are an unsung hero, what their accomplishments are, and a photo or two, or links to such photos. If you can have such a person or group include a note stating to the effect that they don't mind sharing their picture(s), that would certainly be helpful. When you send these materials, please include "unsung hero" in the subject heading so I can keep it better organized.


Friday, October 5, 2007

Sea water temperature tests to see impact on turtle population

From an article by Apinya Wipatayotin in the Bangkok Post as posted on Ocean Conserve:

The Marine and Coastal Resources Department is monitoring sea water temperatures at five major turtle nesting grounds to study the impact of global warming on their population. The targeted areas are Koh Surin, the Similan islands, Tai Maung beach and Prathong beach in Phangnga, and Koh Kram in Chon Buri province.

The move comes after international marine biologists recently found evidence that a rise of just one degree Celsius in sea water temperatures can stop the development of male turtles.

Unlike mammals, including humans, where sex determination is chromosomal, turtles' and crocodiles' sex is determined by genes which react to the temperature during the incubation stage of their eggs.

Marine biologist Kongkiat Kittiwattanawong, of the Phuket Marine Biological Centre, said the optimum temperature for turtle hatching is 29.5C.

''Only at this temperature can we hope to see the same number of male and female turtles hatch in the same nest.''

A study of the impact of rising sea temperatures on sea turtles in Malaysia suggested that the warmer climate has led to a sharp reduction in the male sea turtle population, said Mr Kongkiat.

As a result, fewer female turtles come to nest.


Thursday, October 4, 2007

CORAL seeks communications manager

From The Coral Reef Alliance:

The Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) is the only international organization working exclusively to save the Earth’s coral reefs and life forms and cultures dependant upon them. . . .

As our Communications Manager, your mission will be to help in creating awareness of the plight of coral reefs and to help change human behavior in order to save coral reefs and the cultures and life forms dependent upon them. This is a vitally important job that requires a passionate commitment to CORAL’s mission.

We are seeking a very dynamic and creative Communications Manager to join our professional team in our San Francisco Financial District headquarters. This is a newly created full-time position that reports to the Director of External Relations and is responsible for the communications and public relations program. This position is being created to help facilitate the dynamic growth mandated by our new five-year strategic plan. If you have corporate or nonprofit experience that would assure success in running your own communications program, we wish to speak with you.


Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Bahamian treatment of marine turtles criticized

A story by N. Thomas-Brown from The Nassau Guardian:

The brutal treatment of a Loggerhead turtle in front of horrified Bahamians and tourists on Arawak Cay has placed renewed focus on a petition to the Bahamas government, that demands a ban on the catching, possession and slaughtering of the gentle sea creatures.

The petition is posted on the website by animal rights activists who are hoping to get 3,000 signatures. Up to press time, 2,638 supporters from The Bahamas, Italy and other countries had signed.

"I was horrified to learn that The Bahamas' fisheries laws allow the catching and killing of of these turtles, despite The Bahamas being a party to CITES, which lists all marine turtles as endangered or threatened," reads the petition that is addressed to the prime minister, minister of fisheries and minister of tourism.

CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, is an international agreement between governments. Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.

The petition also expressed shock at the way the animals were treated by their captors. "I was further horrified to learn of the usual method employed by Bahamians of keeping these turtles captive while awaiting a buyer. They are flipped upside down, rendering them helpless and unable to move, and often left in the sun for days in this manner, which results in dehydration and tremendous suffering. They are then killed by either decapitation or slitting their throats."
Sign the petition.


Employment: Pedro Bank Project, Jamaica

From the

. . .there is an opening with The Nature Conservancy Jamaica Office for the Pedro Bank Project. Please follow this link if interested or please feel free to pass it on to any qualified candidates you might know or on any relevant list serves.

Nathalie Zenny,Marine Programme Manager
Jamaica Office, Southeast Caribbean Programme


Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Auction to name fish nets $2 million USD

From a story by Juliet Eilperin in The Washington Post:

MONTE CARLO, Monaco, Sept. 20 -- An auction of rights to name 10 newly discovered species of fish raised more than $2 million for conservation efforts in eastern Indonesia on Thursday night, setting a record for an event of its type.

The black-tie soiree, hosted by Prince Albert II and sponsored by Conservation International and the Monaco-Asia Society, featured species found last year in the Bird's Head Seascape, an area in the northwest corner of Indonesian Papua. Prices for the naming rights ranged from $500,000 for a Hemiscyllium shark from Cendrawasih Bay to $50,000 for the Pseudanthias fairy basslet. The identities of the winning bidders, and the names they chose, were not immediately disclosed.


Monday, October 1, 2007

UN: Global Seafood Industry Must Adapt To 'Greener' Fish; 'The Way Of The Future'

From an article on UnderWater Times:

Dublin, Ireland (Sep 28, 2007 15:10 EST) The $400-billion global seafood industry has no choice but to adapt to intensifying demand from retailers and consumers for environmentally friendly ‘greener’ fish that are not taken from overexploited stocks, farmed in ponds where mangroves once stood or caught in nets that also snag endangered turtles, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

“The push towards sustainable fisheries is not just coming from government or environmental groups, but from the market itself,” FAO Fishing Industries Division Director Grimur Valdimarsson told a three-day Seafood Industry Congress which ended in Dublin, Ireland, yesterday, noting that major seafood retailers like Unilever, Tesco, Walmart and Asda have already committed to putting on their shelves only fish that was harvested or raised sustainably.

“In recent years the seafood industry has been uncertain as to whether these trends represent a momentary fad. Today, there’s no question: it’s real, it’s a sea change, and it’s the way of the future,” he said.


Employment: Environmental officers, Barbados and St. Lucia

From the sustainable-tourism list serve:

Almond Resorts are inviting suitable applicants for the positions of Environmental Officers in Barbados and St. Lucia.

Almond Resorts are 4-star all inclusive properties and include The Almond Beach Village, Almond Beach Club and Almond Casuarina Beach in Barbados, the Almond Morgan Bay and the Almond Smugglers Cove in St. Lucia.

Applicants should have at least a primary degree in a related discipline and preferably experience in the Environment/Tourism field. The EO will be responsible for (among other things) implementing the Environmental Policy, Green Globe Certification, Disaster Management Plans, Monitoring of the Waste Water Treatment Plants and ensuring that the Environmental Laws of the country are adhered to.

Interest applicants should contact Loreto Duffy, Director of Environmental Programmes, Almond Resorts Inc, at as soon as possible. Applicants should have all the required documentation to work in either Barbados or St. Lucia.

Want to post?
Ed Blume, a volunteer for Centro Ecológico Akumal (CEA), moderates the blog. Anyone wishing to post can contact Ed at

  © Blogger templates Newspaper III by 2008

Back to TOP