This from a sobering research report published last week by some of the world’s leading experts on penguins. The report notes that “more than half of the world’s 18 penguin species are declining.”
The three species most in danger are:
- African penguin
- Galápagos penguin
- Yellow-eyed penguin (seen below in New Zealand)
The report notes that there are only 1,700 pairs of yellow-eyed penguins left on our planet. Galápagos penguin could number fewer than that. And the African penguin, at 21,000 pairs, has seen its population drop from 1.5 million in the early 1900s. To call this an emergency is an epic understatement.
I wrote The Tourist Trail because of penguins and whales, because I wanted to raise awareness of their plight and the heroic efforts of those who are trying to protect them.
But more important than the book, I also stopped eating seafood.
In the greater scheme, it’s a small thing to do. But if everyone did this small thing we would save millions of penguins, dolphins, albatross, and whales. Because even if they are not being fished to extinction, they are being bycaught to extinction.
The demand that we create fuels the decimation of oceans. We are the problem and we are the solution.
If you’ve given up on seafood, thank you. If you haven’t, please consider it.
If not for you, for the penguins.
Author of the novels The Tourist Trail and Where Oceans Hide Their Dead. Co-founder of Ashland Creek Press and editor of Writing for Animals (also now a writing program).