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Posted Wed Jan 25 2012: from New York Times:
In Jack Mackerel's Plunder, Hints of Epic Fish Collapse
Eric Pineda, a dock agent in this old port south of Santiago, peered deep into the Achernar's hold at a measly 10 tons of jack mackerel -- the catch after four days in waters once so rich they filled the 17-meter fishing boat in a few hours.... "It's going fast," he said as he looked at the 57-foot boat. "We've got to fish harder before it's all gone." Asked what he would leave his son, he shrugged: "He'll have to find something else."... Stocks have dropped from an estimated 30 million metric tons to less than a tenth of that in two decades. The world's largest trawlers, after depleting other oceans, now head south toward the edge of Antarctica to compete for what is left.... "This is the last of the buffaloes," he said. "When they're gone, everything will be gone."... Meanwhile, industrial fleets bound only by voluntary restraints compete in what amounts to a free-for-all in no manís water at the bottom of the world. From 2006 through 2011, scientists estimate, jack mackerel stocks declined 63 percent.
[Read more stories about: hunting to extinction, overfishing, food crisis]

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