Environmental Issues

Public Invited to Add Comments of Marine Protected Areas Process

The state of California has invited the public to be involved in the planning for the California south coast marine preserves as dictated by the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA). Below is a schedule of upcoming meetings of the MLPA Blue Ribbon Task Force, Master Plan Science Advisory Team and South Coast Regional Stakeholder Group. All meetings are open to the public and are also simultaneously webcast on the day of the meeting at www.dfg.ca.gov/mlpa/meetings_sc.asp. For more information on the MLPA Initiative, visit: www.dfg.ca.gov/mlpa/. Also, […]

Stellar Examples of Overexploitation

It was meant to be a voyage of discovery, and in that regard, it achieved its goal. But it also proved to be a voyage that brought with it troubles, death, and disasters. The effects of some of these are still being felt until today.      In the late 1740s, the Danish navigator Vitus Jonasen Bering, sailing for Russia, explored northeastern Siberia and the far north Pacific Ocean. During a previous journey, he had concluded that water did separate Asia from North America, but […]

Southern California Abalone: Past, Present and Future

Although there are additional species, the primary species in Southern California waters are the White, Red, Pink, Green, and Black Abalone. Whites, which at one time were common, are currently on the Federal endangered species list. They are generally found in depths greater than 70 to 80 feet. Reds, the species most closely associated with commercial fisheries of abalone, are typically found in shallower water than Whites, but seem to prefer the colder waters north from Point Conception to the Pacific Northwest. Two shallow water […]

Divers Assist in Removing Killer Gillnet

As an avid wreck diver, I am always interested in finding new wrecks. My buddy Ross Overstreet is the same way. In December he was scouting the Huntington Flats area and found a promising site. When he dropped down, he soon realized it was not going to be an exploratory dive. The visibility was limited and there was plenty of surge, even at 95 feet. His anchor was fouled in a monofilament net. He worked furiously to free the anchor, seeing firsthand how easy it […]

Reef Check Trains Divers

Over the years, numerous efforts to monitor California’s marine resources have been made by government, academic, private, and nonprofit institutions. Since most groups use different methods, focus on different target species, and have different data reporting formats, it was virtually impossible to perform statewide analyses. As a result, the snapshot of California’s rocky reef ecosystems was out of focus. Enter Reef Check Foundation, the worldwide reef monitoring organization, which created the California Monitoring Protocol. Developed in collaboration with marine biologists throughout the state, key vertebrate […]

Is Tide Turning For Sea Turtle Protections?

Endangered sea turtles. These graceful creatures have long fascinated people and for years the United States has played a lead role globally in their protection. But the tide could be turning. The government is now seemingly more interested in rolling back conservation measures than protecting the last of the sea turtles, particularly along the California coast. At a time when the Pacific leatherback sea turtle is on the verge of extinction, decisive action is needed to protect these species. And this has been the role […]

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