The Weekly Dive Vol. 24

Dive into the latest edition of The Weekly Dive, where we bring you the big ocean news!

Navy study: sonar more harmful to whales than thought. Evidence has shown that loud noises underwater such as explosions and sonar are harmful to cetaceans. Now, the Navy’s own research suggests the damage to marine mammals in Hawaii and California is much greater than previously thought, including more than 1,600 instances of injury or hearing loss. [] 

First manta ray tracking study provides insights. A satellite tag study showed manta rays travel long distances and frequent coastlines. The animals, classified vulnerable, one step below endangered, are slow-growing, susceptible to fishing pressures, spent a lot of time in shipping lanes and were only within protected waters about 10% of the time. [The Los Angeles Times] 

Lobster poacher goes to jail. A man who took 47 lobsters out of a marine reserve in Laguna Beach, California received seven days in jail, a $20,000 fine, and three years probation. The same week in Indonesia, a local tribe’s MPA patrol caught poachers with $160,000 in plundered sealife before the offenders escaped. [The Los Angeles Times; The Huffington Post] 


NOAA: US fish stocks improving. In 2011, six fish populations returned to “healthy levels,” defined as just 40% of their historical levels. NOAA argues that the overall increase shows catch limits have been effective, but it is too early to revoke restrictions, said the Pew Environmental Group, despite pressure from the fishing community. [The New York Times] 

Paul Watson arrested in Germany on decade-old charge. The anti-whaling activist was accused of attempting to sink a shark finning boat in 2002, but quickly dropped by Costa Rican officials. The case was recently reopened and Costa Rica has confirmed a request for Watson’s extradition from Germany. [The Independent]  

Evidence mounts against hatchery-raised salmon. Twenty-three new studies explore how salmon released to the wild after being raised in hatcheries impact wild salmon populations’ breeding opportunities, genetic diversity, and productivity, among other things. This adds to previous reports that salmon hatcheries are problematic. [The Huffington  Post] 

Ocean wind power transmission line takes step forward. Environmental impact studies will begin for the Atlantic Wind Connection, a proposed wind power transmission line along the northeast US coast, which would transport energy to shore from multiple offshore wind farms. [The New York Times]    

Brought to you from Crystal Cove State Park: Here’s the Weekly Dive video edition! Today we cover gray whale calves and a study of penguins from space.


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