Sunday, October 24, 2010
Bluefin Tuna - The Delicious Torpedo
11:24 am cdt
The report posted last week referred to the following story http://www.wafb.com/Global/story.asp?S=13342951 about the health of the gulf. This week, I want to concentrate on 1 species - THE
BLUEFIN TUNA. The article states:
"The spill, 50
miles off the Louisiana coast, happened in the precise place at just the right time to threaten the bluefin larvae bobbing
on the surface. The Gulf of Mexico is the only known spawning area for western Atlantic bluefin.Was it catastrophic for the bluefin? 'Probably not,' said NOAA's John Lamkin, who expects
data back from Poland near the end of the year. But he added: 'Any larvae that came into contact with the oil doesn't have
a chance.' Scientists participating in the AP survey were not optimistic
about the bluefin. They ranked the health of the tuna before the spill at a fragile 55. That's now down to about 45."
Here are some facts about the Bluefin Tuna:
Gulf of Mexico is the major spawning ground of the western population of Atlantic bluefin tuna.
- it is an incredible hunter
-Tuna, originates from the Greek word
meaning "to rush,"
- it can swim at speeds of 1.5-4 knots, can maintain 8 knots for some time, and can break 20 knots for short periods. That's REALLY fast - 20 knots is 23 miles per hour
(mph).The world record for a human 100 meter dash is 23.4 miles per hour. Ask a parent to drive in your neighborhood
at 23 miles per hour and see for yourself!
These fast speeds make them incredible hunters. Check out this National
Geographic video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1m6IKiO26c
Unfortunately for them, the blue fin tuna also tastes delicious
and is very highly prized by sushi chefs. They are caught faster than they can reproduce. It grows to maturity very slowly.
Soooo, WHAT CAN YOU
- make sure you ask for a bluefin
alternative next time you go to a seafood or sushi restaurant.
- Download the iphone app - Seafood
Watch by the Monterrey Bay Aquarium(http://www.montereybayaquarium.org/cr/SeafoodWatch/web/sfw_iPhone.aspx)
It show alternatives to Blue Fin and other endangered seafood.
- If you catch one while fishing in the gulf, tag it if you can & release it so it can have a chance to survive.
Let's keep working on helping the animals of the Gulf of Mexico!
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
6 months after - A Gulf Report Card
8:23 pm cdt
What do you think? An Associated Press
poll of scientists asked for a rating of the gulf's current overall health. They gave it a 65 - but it was only a 71 before
the oil spill! They say "there's still a lot of wariness of what that long-term impact is going to be." Check
out the article on WAFB's website, http://www.wafb.com/Global/story.asp?S=13342951 It explains that "research findings already released have led scientists and the government to shift their focus
from the sea's surface to deeper waters and the ocean bottom."
Well, that's what we
have been been saying all along! There's a lot of animals out there that will be affected for years to come - not just
by the BP oil spill, but from runoff of fertilizers dumped into the Mississippi River and carried out to the gulf, irresponsible
overfishing and other industrial pollutants. We, as kids and young adults, have to keep studying and
learning all about the gulf so we can teach others. There are many adults out there that
can help, and organizations such as CCA & Gulf Restoration Network can help change the laws that protect and oversee
the conservation of this precious resource. Everyone should be able to enjoy the Gulf of Mexico - whether vacationing with your family at the beaches in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama or
Florida, fishing offshore, YOLO boarding, SCUBA diving, whatever! We have to share it with each other and the animals that
call it home.
The Gulf Restoration Network has some aerial photos taken yesterday, October
19, 2010. They show oil still in the water and coastline. Click on the link below to see, because a picture is worth
a thousand words!http://www.flickr.com/photos/healthygulf/sets/72157625075997623/with/5097480351/
WHAT DO YOU THINK???
A word from Rory's family:
7:37 pm cdt
Here we are, 6 months after the Deepwater Horizon
BP oil spill. Where do we stand? kidslovethegulf.org has had tremendous success uniting kids
in the fundraising effort to help rescue & rehabilitate marine animals hurt by the spill. It has been a joy watching them
learn about the gulf and then share their knowledge with their peers. I grew up in Louisiana and never knew whales lived in
the Gulf of Mexico! These kids have taught us all so much. They will continue to raise money to donate to LMMSTRP and to grow
the program to help teach us more about the animals and the delicate ecosystem that we share. Industry & Mother Nature can
coexist ... it is up to this generation to learn to keep the delicate balance. They are the stewards of the future and have
proved that even a kid can make a difference!