Overfishing is a serious problem that plagues our oceans and estimates suggest that close to 2 trillion animals are caught in the ocean each year. In order to raise awareness about this cause, an international group of volunteers have created a short film titled “Losing Nemo.”
“Ocean overfishing is simply the taking of wildlife from the sea at rates too high for fished species to replace themselves,” shares the National Geographic. “The earliest overfishing occurred in the early 1800s when humans, seeking blubber for lamp oil, decimated the whale population. Some fish that we eat, including Atlantic cod and herring and California’s sardines, were also harvested to the brink of extinction by the mid-1900s. Highly disruptive to the food chain, these isolated, regional depletions became global and catastrophic by the late 20th century.”
Most recently, a study found that the endangered bluefin tuna has seen a record decline by a whopping rate of 96% according to a newly published study. The problem with the overfishing is that the young fish are being fished before they have the opportunity to reproduce and increase their population.
According to the Guardian:
Last week, one fish sold in Japan for more than £1m, reflecting the rarity of the bluefin tuna and the continued demand for its fatty flesh, which is sold for high prices across Asia and in some high-end western restaurants.
Bluefin tuna is one of nature’s most successful ocean inhabitants, the biggest of the tuna and a top-of-the-food-chain fish with few natural predators. But the advent of industrial fishing methods and a taste for the species among rich sushi devotees have led to its being hunted to the brink of extinction.
If current trends continue, the species will soon be functionally extinct in the Pacific, and the frozen bodies held in a few high-security Asian warehouses will be the last gasp the species.
More than nine out of 10 of the species recently caught were too young to have reproduced, meaning they may have been the last generation of the bluefin tuna.