How can YOU help our reefs and oceans survive?
1. Refuse to buy shells, starfish, turtle shells and coral. All of these are illegal and could get you into trouble at the airport anyway. The collectors kill the creatures which live in the shells and this throws reef ecosystems out of balance and allows, for example, the proliferation of damaging crown-of-thorns starfish once their triton shell predators are removed from the sea by collectors. Once certain fish are overfished, sea urchins will take over a reef. Biodiversity is lost.
2. Don’t buy undersized fish or baby sharks.
3. Don’t litter. Far too much litter ends up in our oceans and kills fish, coral, turtles and other sea life.
4. Don’t trample on the dune vegetation which holds the dunes together in the face of wind and waves.
5. Be careful not to damage the coral when snorkeling or anchoring a boat.
6. Encourage the development of Marine Protected Areas if you live on a tropical coast.
7. Don’t own a marine aquarium unless you can prove that the coral, clams, anemones and fish have all been sustainably bred and not poached from the ocean.
8. DO take your litter home with you if you cannot find a bin.
9. DO be involved in beach clean-up and encourage your hotel to do the same.
10. DO buy craft items made from recycled materials which may include marine debris like flip-flops.
11. DO introduce your children to the wonders of the ocean so that they will want to protect it too.
12. DO encourage the protection of mangroves and wetlands which are essential to the health of the oceans.