Home > News > Regional
Thursday June 12, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Thursday June 12, 2014 MYT 7:34:06 AM
WELLINGTON: New Zealand dismissed a call from top marine scientists to better protect a rare dolphin, saying existing safeguards for the creature dubbed “the hobbit of the sea” were sufficient.
The International Whaling Commission’s (IWC) scientific committee has warned that the Maui’s dolphin will become extinct unless fishing is banned in its habitat.
Researchers believe only around 50 Maui’s dolphins are left in their sole range – waters off the North Island’s west coast – and they estimate three-to-four are accidentally killed as fishing by-catch every year.
Conservation Minister Nick Smith disputed the figure, saying that a ban on set-netting covering an area of 6,200sq km had been effective in minimising deaths.
While the IWC wants a total fishing ban in a larger area extending 20 nautical miles from the coast, Smith said there was no evidence the dolphins were found outside the area that was already protected.
“Effectively, they are asking us to shut down the entire fishing industry all the way up the west coast of the North Island, way beyond areas where we have any evidence that the Maui’s dolphin are,” he said.
“I am not going to get in the business of banning fishing (in areas) where there is no evidence Maui’s dolphin exists.” — AFP
Tags / Keywords:
New Zealand, Maui, dolphin
New Zealand offers to take in Rohingya migrants
Japan dolphin fishermen vow to continue slaughter
Rizalman pleads not guilty in New Zealand
Rizalman pleads not guilty to indecently assaulting New Zealand woman
New Zealand glacier body identified after 42 years
Pentagon chief urges end to island-building in South China Sea
Lorry driver pleads guilty to causing death of five
Hong Kong eyeing implications for banks of FIFA corruption probe
Two cops, not 12, probed in connection with mass graves
Hospitals overwhelmed as India heatwave deaths near 1,500
Have a 'whale' of a good time in Queensland
Many want discounts and incentives to settle traffic fines
NSA chief urges 'safe' Internet under equivalent of Law of the Sea
Proud Basques Bilbao eyeing Cup upset against Barca
Copyright © 1995-2015 Star Media Group Berhad (ROC 10894D)(Formerly known as Star Publications (Malaysia) Berhad)