A new WWF study claims marine mammals, birds, fish and reptile populations are only half of what they used to be.
On Wednesday, the World Wildlife Fun (WWF) released a new study on marine life. The study claims that marine life populations have decreased to half of their strength since 1970. Populations of marine mammals, birds, reptiles and fish have declined considerably.
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The decline has been gradual for the past four decades. The conservation group WWF warned that the populations will further decline. Unless or until human interventions stop, the marine populations remain at risk.
Fish populations have especially declined due to its status as a human food. The study suggests fish have also had the greatest decline. Fish populations considerably decreased from 1970 to 2010.
The major causes of the decline are over-fishing, pollution and climate change. The study was published as a Living Blue Planet Report by the WWF. The report has suggested that the marine species involved in global human food supply are hit the hardest.
For example, the fish families of Tuna and Mackerel have declined by 7 percent in the last 40 years. The report indicates a single generation of humans have depleted half of marine life. Humans are catching fish faster than fish can reproduce. Marco Lambertini the head of the WWF believes the practice has severely damaged the marine ecosystem.
The destruction of marine habitats due to over population and development has also led to the decline. If significant changes do not take place, ocean life may be depleted completely.
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There would be no fish left for future generations. The report also revealed coral reefs, mangroves and sea grasses are also decreasing. These habitats serve as sanctuaries to entire fish populations. The report warns if steps are not taken coral reefs will be extinct by 2050.