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Marine Protection

Ecuadorian Soccer Star Weighs in to Save Sharks

In Ecuador, celebrities don't come more celebrated than Alex Aguinaga, the country's most widely recognized soccer star and one of its most respected citizens.

So Ecuadorians took notice last October when Aguinaga—along with the coach and four other top players of the country's World Cup-bound national team—launched a petition drive aimed at pressing the government to curb the wholesale killing of sharks.

Inter-Institutional Tension in the Galapagos Marine Reserve Mounts

Recently, two isolated incidents occurred on the island of Baltra, Galapagos Islands that warrant dissemination to the international community and must be addressed by the President of Ecuador.

On March 14th, the Ecuadorian Navy arrested two Park Wardens in Baltra who were investigating a denouncement made by PetroEcuador. A single hulled tanker was illegally transferring and selling diesel fuel to a foreign yacht in a highly sensitive area.

WildAid’s Alternative Income Project in Galapagos Wins Prize

WildAid was one of only five winning applicants, out of 311 total, to win the UNDP Equator Prize for our work with the Women’s Association Pescado Azul, in the island of Isabela, Galápagos.

Pescado Azul provides jobs for unemployed women and sustainable economic alternatives for fishermen. Traditionally, the fishermen have relied on declining coastal sea cucumber, lobster, and shark populations for their livelihood. The association provides an alternative by creating a market for yellowfin tuna, a migratory species, which is processed, smoked and sold to tourists.

Notes from the field: Commercialization of Shark Fins in Galapagos

On July 20th, Rafael Correa, President of Ecuador, repealed Decree 2130 which prohibited the commercialization of shark fins and installed Decree 486.

Bo Derek: We all must battle wildlife traffickers

Editor's note: Bo Derek is an actress who starred in the movie "10." Most recently, she starred in the series "Fashion House." She is also an activist working extensively to raise awareness of the costs of wildlife trafficking. She submitted this commentary to CNN's Larry King Live.

When I first visited the Galapagos Islands Marine Reserve, I expected to see an untouched paradise. While it is still beautiful to the naked eye, behind the scenes, all is not well. While there, I learned that the famous sharks of the Galapagos were under siege for their fins.

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