The BBC carry this report on the threat globally to bird life but I was particularly drawn to the section which said:
‘However, there has been a dramatic decline, particularly in Orkney and Shetland and on St Kilda in the Western Isles.
“Some efforts are underway to protect important seabird foraging areas in international waters, but there is much more we could do around the UK to protect our internationally important and increasingly threatened seabird populations,” said Laura Bambini, the RSPB Scotland’s seabird recovery officer.’
Given the reports we have carried in the past two years on the activities of the enormous supertrawlers which fish those waters and indeed a broad swath of ocean from the Faroes to West Africa there is no doubt that the impact on both bird life and marine mammals must be having a dramatic impact,
Several areas are marked as marine conservation zones but these are piece meal and in any case we monitored some of the super trawlers working in or adjacent to these areas.
It seems that a change to UK EU relations will not change things either as fisheries seem to be a bargaining chip and in any case many areas of the Atlantic seaboard are open ground anyway with trawlers from as far afield as China (using ports in Mauritania) using the grounds.
A major conservation initiative is necessary before it’s too late if indeed the eleventh hour is not long past!
pp Celtic League