Thursday, 1 September 2016

Nature : Greenland Shark (and Trawling)

I'm a big fan of nature, I like it a lot, what I'm not a huge fan of is fish, as I suffer massively from ichthyophobia.  I'm also, incidentally allergic to shellfish & fish oil, so there maybe some link, whatever... 

My phobia aside, I read recently about their finding out the Greenland shark was the oldest living vertebrate, with an individual being at least 250+ years old.  And their not reaching maturity until they're at least 150 years old, hence at the moment we have lots of teenage Greenland sharks and very few babies out there.

The reason we need the babies is that they were over fished, back years ago, they were used to make very good machine oil.  Again I guess something I'm a little happier about, as they're no longer used for this.

But in the study they had to use part of the sharks eye for the study, and they got these eyes from sharks caught by accident in giant trawling nets.

All the news outlets have focused on the scientific discovery of the age of these amazing animals, but no-one, not a single place I've looked has covered the tragedy that they had accidentally caught, killed and butchered this magnificently long lived female shark.

It's dead... It is no more... It was dragged out of the sea in which it had lived since the late 1700's and it was slaughtered on the rolling grimy deck of a trawler, or it may have already been dead in their great massive water hoovering net.


No-one talks about this, I find fish repellent, but even without that in my mind, are fish from the ocean farmed?... No... So we go out and destroy whole ecosystems, whole magnificent creatures, they focused on dolphins getting stuck in Tuna nets, they focused Amazon forest clearance for beef cattle, but not on the fact we land dwelling, tree evolved monkeys, go out to a place so alien to us that we evolved away from it millions of years ago, and we trawl it clean of life.

We even make heroic TV programmes, "Trawler Men" and "Toughest Catch" and "River Monsters", though I admit the latter seem to put things back, and we vaunt how difficult it was to catch these fish; no-one stops to think we're destroying these huge swathes of ocean.

We have tiffs with other countries (The Cod Wars with Iceland, the EU Fishing Rights with Spain etc).

Then there's the utter hilarity of some countries and communities claiming it's some historic right, Japan or the Inuit (they know who I mean) catching Wales!

It's all so ridiculous, my grandfathers spent a lot of time in two different world wars shooting Germans, does that give me the right to claim I can go shoot them in some tradition?... No, because I'm a rational, normal, law abiding human being.

And we should show some human compassion towards other species, like the Greenland shark, before we hove into view with massive massive metal ships and drag them out of their living rooms to their death.

I hate it, I hate the thought of it.

If you like fish, farm your fish, like we do Loch Salmon.  Don't go destroying wild eco-systems.

This rant is at an end.

P.S. Yes I eat meat, but it's FARMED, smart arse, I don't eat wild plains buffalo, I eat animals kept in nicer conditions than some people, whom were bred, raised and put into the food chain for me, they did not destroy any wild infrastructure... (well a bit, but you know what I mean)

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