Google’s new catch

Internet>> Satellite Imagery ÔÇó Persian Gulf

Published: Monday 30 November -0001

Google Earth image of a fish weir along the Persian Gulf

After helping scientists discover a reef off Australia, spot new forests and create maps on the extent of deforestation, Google Earth has another scientific finding to its credit. Researchers from the University of British Columbia in Canada recently scoured the virtual globe for fish weirs (giant fish traps) along the coasts of seven Persian Gulf countries and found that the traditional fishing method has a larger impact on the fish stock than believed.

They found some 1,900 fish weirs, suggesting that the total catch in the Persian Gulf may be six times the officially reported level of 5,260 tonnes a year. Since several countries do not provide reliable data on their fisheries’ catch, conservationists and policy makers can use the tool to get accurate fishing estimates, suggests Daniel Pauly, co-author of the study published in ICES Journal of Marine Science in November.

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