April 25th is “World Penguin Day”, undoubtedly the world’s most popular bird – think of Happy Feet, March of the Penguins, Pingu just to name a few uses in popular culture. These charismatic flightless birds are funny to watch on land but are graceful and rapid in water. They occur only in the seas of the Southern hemisphere; there are seventeen species of penguin ranging from the Galapagos to Antarctica.
Overfishing has given rise to a diplomatic trouble between China and Ecuador. In mid-August, Ecuador detained a Chinese vessel in the Galapagos Islands and found 6.600 sharks on board. The 20 Chinese fishermen have been sentenced up to four years for illegally fishing and to pay US$ 5.9 million.
Authorities in Ecuador have detained the crew of a Chinese fishing boat suspected to have caught hundreds of endangered sharks in the Galapagos Islands. The Fu Yuan Yu Leng 999 was found Sunday in the archipelago, which is a marine reserve, carrying 300 tons of fish.
Shifts in trade winds and ocean currents powered a resurgence of endangered Galapagos Penguins over the past 30 years, according to a new study led by researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI). These changes enlarged a cold pool of water the penguins rely on for food and breeding-an expansion that could continue as the climate changes over the coming decades, according to the study.
Staff at the Galapagos National Park in Ecuador announced Lonesome George, a giant tortoise believed to be the last of its subspecies, has died. Scientists estimate he was about 100 years old.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Committee (WHC) Wednesday removed the Galapagos Islands (belonging to Ecuador) from its list of endangered sites, reported the organization currently holding its 34th session in Brazil.