This makes me sad, dolphins are disappearing in large numbers.
Sightings by marine scientists of dolphins in the north Atlantic’s Bay of Biscay have dropped off by 80 percent compared to the same period in 2006, a wildlife conservation group said Wednesday.
The alarming drop in numbers of the Bay’s three most common species of dolphin — the striped, bottlenose and common — can be attributed to one or both of two causes, Clive Martin, senior wildlife officer for the Biscay Dolphin Research Programme, told AFP.
“We know for a fact that by-catch is killing thousands of dolphins every year,” he said, referring to commercial fishing operations in the bay, which is formed by the northern coast of Spain and the eastern French seaboard up to the tip of Brittany.
Martin singled out French “pair trawlers” that sweep the ocean with huge nets twice the size of a football pitch strung out between them as being especially lethal to the marine mammals.
“Dolphins are sometimes trapped hundreds at a time, and are asphyxiated” when they cannot come up for air, he said. Most dolphins typically replenish their lungs with fresh air every five minutes or so, he explained.