The demand for shark fins as a pricey delicacy in China and other Asian countries has been devastating enough for shark populations, but a new investigation in Peru reveals that it’s been devastating for dolphins as well.
At least 15,000 dolphins are killed off the coast of Peru each year by fisherman who use them as shark bait, according to watchdog group Asociacion Mundo Azul after a months-long investigation.
Killing of dolphins was outlawed by Peru's legislature in 1997, but Stefan Austermuhle, executive director of Blue World, said fishermen have continued to target the mammals, which they harpoon, for bait.[…]
"The fishermen even buy harpoons known as 'dolphin killers,'" he said. "This happens in front of the entire world and no one does anything."
The good news for the dolphins is that it appears the consumption of shark fin soup, popular at weddings and other banquets, is slowly getting less popular in China, falling more than 50 percent over the last two years according to some estimates. Still, more than 70 million sharks were killed last year to feed Chinese demand.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Ebola Story
How our minds build narratives out of disaster.
The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola
PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer
The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics
A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers
Welcome to 13th Grade!
Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.
The Actual World
“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.