No-go areas to protect skate and seahorses
A call to set up more than 70 new marine
nature reserves by 2012, has been made by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS)
and The Co-operative Group. They say the areas are needed around the UK to
protect endangered fish, coral and other wildlife. Six years of surveying work
carried out by divers has produced recommended areas which would increase the
amount of UK seas protected in marine reserves from just 6km square to 212km
In UK seas there are 22 species of wildlife considered to be
facing the threat of global extinction. Once common species such as common
skate and Atlantic halibut are now listed as endangered, and only eight of the
47 fish stocks found around the British Isles remain in a healthy state.
Under the new Marine and Coastal Access
Act, the Government will have a ‘duty’ to designate marine conservation zones
(MCZs), where commercial fishing and dredging, will be banned.