Sea Shepherd UK
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Who Are Sea Shepherd UK?
This charity has a mission to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world's oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species. They use innovative direct-action tactics to investigate, document, and take action when necessary to expose and confront illegal activities on the high seas. By safeguarding the biodiversity of our delicately balanced ocean ecosystems, Sea Shepherd UK works to ensure their survival for future generations.
Supporting ocean going vessels used for conservation work which are owned and/or operated by Sea Shepherd Global by providing funds for their maintenance and fuel for active campaigns in coastal and high seas campaigns for marine wildlife, notably the IUU fishing campaigns on the West coast of Africa
Sea Shepherd UK continues to offer our reward for information leading to the successful conviction of individuals or groups for specific crimes against marine wildlife set at £5000 for information leading to the successful prosecution of any individuals or companies who kill protected or endangered marine wildlife in UK territorial waters.
Sea Shepherd UK helped design and launch ‘Operation 404’ which aims to end all hunting and trade in wild dolphins. It also aims to end the captivity of dolphins and whales across the globe.
Sea Shepherd UK attends around 250 outreach events educational talks around the UK, Northern Ireland and Jersey each year.
Sea Shepherd UK also continues to provide expertise and financial support for a range of international marine conservation projects which meet Sea Shepherd UK’s ethical and/or conservation aims around the World.
Seal Defence Campaign, 2014 to 2015 (Scotland)
Sea Shepherd UK completed in late August 2015 the second year of our ‘Scottish Seal Defence Campaign’ monitoring the activities of Wild Salmon Netting companies and fish farms to discourage or directly prevent the illegal killing of common and grey seals which are protected species in the UK and European Union. The campaign crew also engaged in seal monitoring expeditions to the Hebrides, Orkney islands, South West Scotland, North West England and North Eastern England.
The campaign generated significant media attention and has documented several potential illegal shootings of protected grey seals as well multiple cases of allegedly illegal killing of protected UK seabird species by UK fishermen at multiple locations.
The Seal Defence Campaign also reduced the numbers of seals shot (by fishermen and associated persons monitored) decrease from around 120 (in 2013) to less than 10 (in 2015) and to less than 30 (in 2016) with no discernible affect to legal fishing activities. The campaign also reported multiple cases of illegal fishing outside of permitted hours to River Bailiffs which resulted in illegally set nets being cut from the water by River Bailiffs in Dunnet Bay.
Ghostnet Campaign, 2018 to 2019 (England & Wales)
In January 2018 Sea Shepherd UK announced our new Ghostnet Campaign to remove hazardous ghost fishing gear from coastal areas around England, Scotland and Wales. Once lost or discarded, sections of fishing net and other fishing equipment can drift through the ocean or be left snagged on wrecks, rocks and reefs indiscriminately killing marine wildlife for decades.
The campaign as a long-term operation and we will work closely with the Marine Management Organisations and other relevant authorities in England, Scotland and Wales to ensure that ghost fishing equipment is removed safely, legally and without harm to the environment or wildlife. Sea Shepherd is cooperating on this campaign with the expert UK ghost gear retrieval charity ‘Fathoms Free’ based on the South coast of England.
Marine Debris Campaign, 2016 to 2019 (UK, Northern Ireland and Jersey)
Marine debris is globally recognized as a monumental environmental concern. It is a danger to all marine life including birds, sharks, turtles, and marine mammals, causing injury or death through drowning, entanglement, or starvation following ingestion. Sea Shepherd’s Marine Debris Campaign aims to educate the public as well as removing harmful plastics and other debris from around the UK’s coastline (typically around 50 beach cleans each year) as part of the Sea Shepherd Movement’s worldwide campaign on the issue.
Operation Bloody Fjords, 2017 to 2019 (Faroe Islands)
In the summer of 2017, Sea Shepherd UK coordinated 18 crew members in 10 rotating teams based in six different Faroese towns covering 19 designated whaling bays. The campaign ran from 1st June to 31st during which our covert volunteer crews managed to extensively document and record nine separate grindadráp hunts and the transport of 6 whole pilot whales (sold for around 25,000 kroner each) from Klaksvik in the North East of the islands to the capital Torshavn in the South to be processed and sold in supermarkets. After the last crew left the islands, Sea Shepherd then released a series of photo reports, videos and testimony from our teams which generated viral news reports around the world by media networks and in the printed press.
Then in May 2018, Sea Shepherd UK stepped up the campaign and sent 38 crew from England, Scotland, France, Spain and Canada with embedded TV crews from South Korea and Italy as well as working with international media. Our crew documented, photographed and, for the first time by any international conservation group, managed to live-stream straight to the web a total of 11 grindadráp hunts while again also documenting the commercial sale of pilot whale meat in the Faroes and the killing of Fulmars in the North East of the Faroe Islands. Our crew's live-streams, videos and photographs lead to hundreds of articles in the international media. Of particular note was the Hvalvik grindadráp of 210 Atlantic White Sided Dolphins on the 11th September which was documented and live-streamed by 5 of our crew. The hunt was disorganised, drawn out, and inhumane and was a catastrophe for the Faroese in the International media causing debates and articles also across the Faroese media with calls, including from the former Faroese Prime Minister, to end the killing of Atlantic white sided dolphins entirely.
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