including seals, sea lions and walruses is becoming increasingly popular in poor nations across the world. Fishermen struggling to make ends meet, because of a fall in coastal fish catches, are being forced to turn to the more meaty alternatives. Martin Robards, of Alaska's
Wildlife Conservation Society, conducted the study of 900 sources after only hearing anecdotal stories about the phenomenon. He said: 'This is essentially a bushmeat problem. It is now clear that human consumption of marine mammals is geographically widespread, taxonomically diverse, and often of uncertain sustainability.'
Randall Reeves of the Okapi Wildlife Associates in Quebec, published his
findings in the journal Biological Conservation.
They found that the number of
countries admitting to consuming marine mammals has risen since 1981 from 107
to 125, and that a total of 87 species have been eaten.
Only 6 per cent of the 1,400 marine
species used as food were marine mammals, but the research suggested action now
needs to be taken before they are depleted or wiped out.
The pair added: 'Our review
highlights an escalation in utilisation of small cetaceans caught in
conjunction with fishing activities since 1970, a form of
'Where consumption relates to food
security and poverty, we found evidence of deliberate killing of animals caught
both deliberately and accidentally in fishing gear.'
The study also outlined how popular
the eating of marine mammals is in North American.
It said most of it occurred in
Alaska and Canada, by Native Americans, who eat bowhead and grey whales, beluga
whales, seals, sea lions and walruses.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2082195/Dolphin-sandwich-Eating-sea-mammals-rise-fall-fish-sees-fishermen-struggling-make-ends-meet.html#ixzz1ib6p3bG8