Canada to preserve unique Pacific coral reefs and sponges

Red Tree Coral (Primnoa sp.) and Bubblegum Coral (Paragorgia sp.)

BC Coastal waters have been said to¬†boast¬†some of the most visually¬†spectacular sea life in the world. Sea corals and sponges are just¬†some of the reasons why. They are not only beautiful natural sculptures, they are also¬†some of the oldest inhabitants of our waters and provide refuge for thousands of¬†other sea creatures along the ocean’s floor off the coasts of Washington and British Columbia. As the corals of our coastlines are extremely fragile,¬†they have become victims¬†to damaging¬†human activities, including harmful fishing practices.

Last week, in¬†honour of¬†World Oceans Day,¬†Honourable Keith Ashfield,¬†Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, announced the launch of the Pacific Region Cold-Water Coral and Sponge Conservation Strategy, which “encompasses short and long-term goals intended to promote the conservation, health and integrity of Canada‚Äôs Pacific Ocean cold-water coral and sponge species.”

The strategy supports DFO’s mandate to develop and implement policies and programs in support of Canada’s scientific, ecological, social and economic interests in oceans and fresh waters. It is part of DFO’s coordinated approach to managing the impact of human activities on Canada’s oceans in a manner that supports the conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, while protecting marine ecosystems and maintaining a prosperous economy.

To learn more, find the DFO Strategy pdf here , the Vancouver Sun article, or to learn about BC sponges see this blog post. The

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