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Friday, February 1, 2013

Biting the hand that feeds us

Yesterday´s news carried a story about a dolphin massacre off Kalpitiya on the northwest coast of the island. The story is being shared far and wide - as it should be. A big draw card to Kalpitiya in recent years has been these very dolphins that move in large groups and entertain dolphin watchers.

The death of these dolphins was caused by illegal fishing activities in the region involving purse seines or ´laila´nets coupled with dynamite that targets small tuna like species. This is the second time such a mass massacre has been reported (the last was from last year) but dolphins get caught in the midst of these non-traditional fishing activities on a regular basis.

This is indeed a huge tragedy and one that needs careful thought and strong support from the entire conservation community and nature lovers in order to solve. I just learnt that the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA) have got the ball rolling and will be working with the relevant authorities and ministries to ensure that such a tragedy does not occur again and that the perpetrators are duly dealt with. The latest news article mentions that the ministry is probing into the situation.

Let us hope for the best. I am confident that the community can come together to make a difference on this matter. We really have to stop biting the hand that feeds us and start protecting the very resources that bring tourists to our shores..

For the news stories, click here http://www.hirunews.lk/52435

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