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#515925 - 07/13/16 05:37 AM Coast Guard Explains Why No Gillnets Is Good Policy
Marty Online   happy
Last week Thursday, we showed you the push by OCEANA Belize for an eventual ban on gill net fishing.

That's after they canvassed a wide range of organizations, all who agree that this ban is in the best interest of sustainable fishing. The Coast Guard was among those recommending the ban, and today, we asked the Coast Guard Commandant explain why they support it:

Admiral John Borland - Commandant, Belize Coast Guard
"Gillnet fishing in my opinion, and my opinion goes back more than 25 years working in the environment, is that its destructive and indiscriminate practice, where the end results are more detrimental than they are beneficial. so that's the coast guard's position and it's not only my position, there are other people in the coast guard that are as equally as competent and trained and educated as I am in the marine environment and dealing with best practices. We don't just do this off the top of our heads, there's a lot of research, analysis and interpretation that's been put into it and so absolutely we are against gillnet fishing."

Daniel Ortiz
"Can you give us instances with you all from the coast guard have experienced the destructive practice in live and living colors?"

Admiral John Borland - Commandant, Belize Coast Guard
"I know it's a topic that you'd like to hear, but again in any area near north of Sarstoon, is one of the primary areas which that destructiveness method continues to be used. Of course we've had a very recent incident near to Money River called rocky point where they were harvesting, indiscriminately with gillnets resulting in a lot of species being destroyed that were not their primary targets. It's wreaking havoc on the species out there. In some cases shark species which is another issue, where we've come across hundreds of sharks being harvested again by the use of gill nets and absolutely not something that we countenance or support."

Yesterday, the Acting Fisheries Administrator told his Haitian Guests that they are well aware of that illegal fishing the Coast Guard Commandant spoke about, and they will take corrective measures in the near future:

Mauro Gongora, Acting Fisheries Administrator
"And we also have common problems and challenges. We have the issue of illegal fishing, which has over the past few months, been highlighted over the media in Belize. Especially as it relates to our southern border with our neighbors in Guatemala who come across to fish in Belize. That's a political issue of course, but also we believe that it is affecting our fishery sector as well and so we are taking concrete actions to address that situation."

The OCEANA Belize representatives tell us that they are hoping that the Government will consider gradual phase out of gill net fishing, and an eventual ban.

Channel 7

Gillnet Documentary

From Oceana Belize

#515938 - 07/13/16 08:01 AM Re: Coast Guard Explains Why No Gillnets Is Good Policy [Re: Marty]
ragman Offline
Maybe 20 or so years ago I was a guest on a fishing boat in the waters off the coast of Rhode Island. What I saw was troubling to say the least. Species that weren't legal where thrown back over(dead) and on one trip I saw two dead dolphins pulled aboard in the gill nets they are entangled themselves in. I was asked not to talk about that and I didn't because I gave my word. In addition many fish was partly eaten by bugs or worms (I can't remember what they are called, sand fleas, maybe) The nets can't be left in the water too long or the whole catch will disappear. It seemed like a very wasteful way to fish.

Then there is the issue of ghost fishing where gill nets which are made of nylon which doesn't rot, have have broken free and continue the kill for years in the oceans.

Many negatives in my opinion.

Edited by ragman (07/13/16 01:24 PM)
Edit Reason: explaination
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