Mediterranean seahorses threatened by ghost fishing nets

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Protecting sea horses from ghost nets
Protecting sea horses from discarded fishing nets - "ghost nets". Photo: Areti Kominou/Ghost fishing Greece/Reuters.
Protecting sea horses from discarded fishing nets – “ghost nets”. Photo: Areti Kominou/Ghost fishing Greece/Reuters.

Divers from Greece and Holland are removing “ghost nets” from the seabed in the Mediterranean because they pose a significant threat to marine wildlife in the waters off Stratoni, northern Greece and elsewhere.

Stratoni, is the home of a large population of seahorses known as the long-snouted seahorse with the scientific name: Hippocampus guttulatus.

This herd of seahorses has nearly doubled in population size since the beginning of a conservation programme in 2015. Recent surveys have indicated that there are almost 100 individual seahorses in the colony.

Ghost nets are discarded plastic fishing nets which lie on the seabed. Overall, activists with an organisation called Healthy Seas have removed 453 tonnes of netting from the seabed in the past six years.

The current dive is the second big cleanup operation in the area in 12 months. The team comprises four Dutch and six Greek divers.

The first dive recovered more than a ton of ghost nets. They’ll be recycled to great products such as sportswear, carpets and socks.

Healthy Seas is an organisation manned by volunteers working in the North Sea, the Adriatic and Mediterranean.

The removal of the nets will now allow marine life to recolonise its lost Habitat. It will also not pose any future entangling threats to the marine species inhabiting area.”

Elina Samara, marine biologist.

Source: The Times hard copy. Comment: clearly overfishing is not enough for the fishing businesses. They have to find other ways to damage marine wildlife. Why are they getting away with dumping over 400 tonnes of plastic into the Med?! Sloppy governments obsessed with the EU and Brexit.