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Marine Life & Conservation Blogs

What impact does catch and release fishing have on sharks?



catch and release fishing

Catching fish with the sole purpose of release is seen by some as an alternative to catch-and-kill fishing, and has become a popular recreational activity in itself. Sharks are often the target, and given their ecological importance, it’s important to consider any potential impacts that this style of fishing may have.

Data regarding mortality rates of catch and release on sharks are scant, however it’s estimated that mortality from capture from scientific research is ~10 % for sharks in general, and may be higher for sport fishing due to longer ‘fight’ times and extended time out of the water. Indeed, a study of juvenile lemon sharks in the Bahamas, found that ~12 % of released sharks died in the 15 minute monitoring period following release, and on the east coast of Australia 6 out of 8 necropsied grey nurse sharks were found to have internal hooks despite having no external signs of fishing gear. Severe injuries and infections have been documented in grey nurse sharks as a result of catch and release, although the long term sub lethal impacts of such maladies are unclear.

catch and release fishing

Sharks are keystone predators that have a disproportionate influence on the health and stability of their environments, and globally their numbers are in decline. While it’s not clear whether injuries or the relatively low mortality rates from recreational fishing can affect marine ecosystems as whole, current data suggests that outcomes for sharks can be improved with shortened fight and handling times. As scuba-enthusiasts and stewards of the ocean, it’s up to us to make a conscious effort to interact with the ocean and its inhabitants in a way that’s not destructive, and that may mean modifying the way we approach even catch and release fishing.

 Find out more about the work that Dr. Kelli Anderson is involved in at

Photos by John Gransbury taken at Fish Rock Cave, South West Rocks, New South Wales, Australia.

Dr. Kelli Anderson is a marine biologist who has worked on aquaculture and marine conservation projects in several countries including Australia, France, the United States and Madagascar. Kelli has also worked as a commercial diver and divemaster, is a keen underwater photographer, and runs a small non-profit based in Australia.

Marine Life & Conservation

The IMPERFECT Conservationist, Episode #4: Think Like an IMPERFECT Conservationist – Why ‘imperfect’ is important (Watch Video)



Why does “Imperfect” matter when it comes to conservation? In this video I explain how being imperfect is important especially when it comes to conservation. This is a view into the mindset of being an Imperfect Conservationist.

This is “The IMPERFECT Conservationist” – Episode #4, a between the scenes Special Edition. In this series I take the big concepts of conservation and break them down into easily digestible bite-size pieces that can be applied to everyday busy life. In each video you will get your dose of “Conservation Empowerment” with ways to THINK like an IMPERFECT Conservationist and EASY – AFFORDABLE – IMPACTFUL conservation action that fits into your life. We can’t do it all, or do it perfectly but when it comes to being part of the solution, we can always do something! Be inspired, inspire others, do something good. Don’t forget to hit that subscribe button, and the bell so you know when my new videos post! More on my website and social channels too.

Subscribe HERE for weekly episodes of The Imperfect Conservationist!

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Marine Life & Conservation Blogs

Mermaid Minute #7: Elephant Seals (Watch Video)



In this weekly series on we are sharing Linden Wolbert’s video series ‘Mermaid Minute’.

The “Mermaid Minute” is an ocean educational web series for children.  Each action-packed episode explores one subject, creature or habitat about our oceans for 60 seconds.

Professional Mermaid Linden Wolbert is a real mermaid whose passion is educating children about the wonders of our oceans, swimming safety and ocean conservation as well as exploration and inspiring our world’s youngest ocean ambassadors.

This is Episode #7 of the Mermaid Minute, the only ocean education web series hosted by a mermaid!

Found in the Pacific, Elephant Seals are smart and social MAMMALS just like us that love hanging out on the beach! They form colonies on land where they mate, fight for territory and bathe in the sun! Male elephant seals are called BULLS, and female elephant seals are called COWS. Males can weight over 5,000 pounds and make some really crazy noises to attract the females! On land, elephant seals get around by flopping on their bellies, yet they swim THOUSANDS of miles anywhere between Mexico to Alaska to find breeding grounds on the beaches.

Elephant seals were almost lost because humans nearly hunted them all to extinction in the 1800’s. Luckily they’ve made an amazing recovery and today there are over 150,000 of them! Anyone can go visit the elephant seals on the coasts of California, Oregon and beyond. And that’s an elephant seal in a MERMAID MINUTE! I’ll sea you next time, my little sea fans!

See and learn more about Mermaid Linden here:

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email

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