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Ecuador

New Tools In The Fight Against Illegal Fishing

Newly installed satellite-based vessel monitoring system (VMS) has proved its worth already by leading to the arrest of illegal fishermen. The state-of-the-art system was financed and installed on May 20th,2009 by WildAid, Conservation International, the Walton Family Foundation, and Resorts World at Sentosa in cooperation with the Galapagos National Park Service and represents the culmination of three years of work.

Longliner from Manta Seized in the GMR

B/P Milena, a fishing vessel from Manta, was observed entering the GMR at 1AM on Thursday, August 20th, and was spotted slowing down 37 miles south of Española via the satelite vessel monitoring system. The GNPS sent out the Sea Ranger 10 where it found the vessel towing seven additional fiberglass boats. The Milena was finally boarded five miles outside the GMR and possessed: 78 albacore, 110 swordfish, 1 marlin, 31 dolphin fish, & 21 sharks. The Milena, its crew of 26 and the seven fiberglass vessels were brought to San Cristobal where admin and legal procedures were initiated.

California Moves To Protect Sharks

California Assembly Members Paul Fong and Jared Huffman today introduced a bill to prohibit the sale of shark fins in California to the State Assembly. California is one of the largest sources of demand for shark fin outside Asia and this bill would represent a major step towards reducing pressure on shark populations. Furthermore the bill complements the ban introduced in both Hawaii and the Commonwealth of North Mariana Islands (CNMI) as well as restrictions established by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).

Ecuador

The Galapagos Archiplego's location, 600 miles off the West Coast of Ecuador, has resulted in the evolution of a unique ecosystem. A unique set of currents and trade winds also brought an unusual variety of plant species to the Islands. Over 20% of the terrestrial and marine species in the Galapagos Islands are found nowhere else on Earth. Approximately 444 fish, 150 bird, and 24 marine mammal species and 28,000 people inhabit the Galapagos Islands. 

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