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Focus on Nuance

Changes Proposed for U.S. Fisheries Management: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, policy, SustainabilityFebruary 9, 2014

This past Tuesday, the draft bill to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Act was released by the U.S. House.  The Magnuson-Stevens Act is a big deal because this is the law that lays out how fisheries management works in the United States.  This time, a number of changes have been proposed by Representative Doc Hastings, some of […]

Largest U.S. Shark Fishery: Coming to a School Lunch Near You?

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, sharks, SustainabilityJuly 2, 2013

Spiny dogfish sharks have had a complicated history when it comes to fisheries management, going from hated pest to crashed fishery to conservation concern and now one of two certified-sustainable shark fisheries ever (the other is the Pacific species of spiny dogfish).  The story didn’t end with being certified sustainable though, and recently this fishery […]

Good Conservation Policies Can Push Markets Towards Conservation

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, policy, Science and SustainabilityMay 12, 2013

A lot of debate among conservationists centers on the conflict between the desire to see a species totally protected from human exploitation and the reality that market forces will continue to exist (see the latest on shark fin bans for a very good example).  Ideally, a conservation plan should strike a balance, ensuring the continued […]

15 important shark conservation and management terms explained with memes

Conservation, Core Themes for 2012, fisheries, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, marine science, Natural Science, Popular Culture, Science, Science and Sustainability, sharksApril 1, 2013

If interested citizens want to get involved in conservation and management policy, it’s absolutely vital to use proper terminology. The policy world can be full of confusing jargon, but there are few ways to discredit yourself in the eyes of decision makers as quickly as using a critical term incorrectly. In fact, it isn’t uncommon […]

The Endangered Species Act and Marine Animals: To List or Not To List?

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, Science and SustainabilityFebruary 28, 2013

Endangered species seem to be coming up around here more often than usual, mostly due to the potential state-level listing of great white sharks in California.  This move has been resisted from some surprising corners, including researchers who are generally pro-shark conservation.  The reasons why scientists might want to oppose an Endangered Species listing are […]

Bluefin Tuna and the Tsukiji Fish Auction: caution in drawing conclusions from record breaking prices

Focus on NuanceJanuary 5, 2013

Today marks the first Tsukiji fish market tuna auction of 2013, and, as in the previous two years, the first fish sold broke all previous records. In 2011, the record breaking tuna sold for $396,000. Last year, we tipped the scales at $736,000. Early this morning, the record breaking bluefin tuna blew the previous records out of […]

Establishing Best Practices to Minimize Waste in a Conservation Genetics Lab

Conservation, Core Themes for 2012, Environmentalism, Focus on Nuance, Life in the Lab, Science, SustainabilityNovember 14, 2012

I am, among other things, a conservation geneticist. What that means is that I use the tools of molecular ecology and population genetics to make observations about species and populations in at-risk ecosystems, assess the status of anthropogenically disturbed populations, and generate data that has direct applications to conservation and management issues. Essentially, the only […]

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