Week 5: Fishing Methods That Pollute The Seas
Welcome back to my blog.
This week I focused on a different area of ocean pollution, which is how fishing methods leave plastic and garbage in the ocean. This blog entry was inspired by one of the education stations at the aquarium, sustainable seafood which focuses on fishing methods that can harm the ocean. These fishing methods are mainly composed of using fishing nets, crates and fishing in general that all leave something behind in the ocean that harms the ocean. For starters, fishing nets are the primary culprits of harming the ocean and its wildlife. This extends from simple fish getting entangled to turtles suffocating from not being able to free themselves. This phenomenon is what’s known as ghost fishing, when fishing gear is continuously catching fish after it’s abandoned and left to drift in the ocean. Fishing crates that are dragged across the seafloor is what’s known as bottom trawling. This one practice has many consequences such as destroying reefs, ecosystems, bottom feeders and producers which will end up disrupting the food chain. And finally fishing using a fishing rod also poses a problem as it might cause plastic and other harmful objects to get dropped into the water which can poison fish or even get tangled up in the reefs.
All these methods each can harm the ocean in their own ways but there are some ways that are the same for each method. One of these ways to harm creatures include materials breaking off and spreading throughout the ocean degrading into microplastics and harmful chemicals. Another way is the gear getting entangled around the reefs or sea creatures such as turtles. When creatures get entangled, they can suffocate because they don’t have the strength to make it to the surface for air or have the ability to catch their prey due to a fin probably being stuck. While this may not seem like it’s polluting the ocean the way plastic is based on what I have explained before, it still is considered pollution since these pieces of equipment are carelessly disposed of into the ocean and aquatic life are who suffer. I’m not saying that we as humans should stop fishing completely, instead I’m saying that we as humans should be more aware of how we are fishing and what the impact on the ocean these methods may have.
This is what my research focused on this week, see you next week.