Maui's Dolphin Defence Fund
Maui's and Hector's are dying many times faster than they can breed because less than 20% of their home is protected against fishing nets. They can only cope with one death every 10-23 years due to all human activities combined, but five Maui's dolphins die in fishing nets each year. That's 75 times more than the sustainable limit.
Unless things change, Maui's dolphins will become extinct by 2030 as a result of fishing alone. We can't allow this to happen!
The New Zealand government just announced new protection measures fort Maui's dolphins, which will do nothing to stop their decline towards extinction. In doing so, it has ignored urgent calls by the international scientific community, including the International Whaling Commission (IWC), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and the Society for Marine Mammalogy (SMM). It also ignored the opinion of almost 100,000 people who have called for the dolphins' immediate and full protection against harmful fishing nets and all other man-made threats throughout their habitatthrough petitions, e-mails or formal submissions as part of government consultations.
We are setting up a MAUI'S DOLPHIN DEFENCE FUND because we feel that the government's decision is not based on the best available science, as is required by law, and because there is a host of procedural irregularities with the New Zealand government's decisions not to protect the dolphins from extinction. But we need your help to challenge the government's decision it in court.
Maui"˜s dolphins are not doomed to extinction. If human induced mortality is removed, they can still bounce back. But they need help now because saving them is a race against time!
You can help to give Maui's dolphins a chance against extinction by making a donation. All donations go directly into NABU International's Maui's dolphin charity account and will be used to challenge the government's decision.
WE ARE THEIR FINAL CHANCE! If we all chip in, we'll reach the target and can overturn this terrible decision. Every Dollar, Euro or Pound will get us closer to their survival.
Dr Barbara Maas
Head of International Species Conservation
NABU International - Foundation for Nature
"Dolphins breathe oxygen just like we do, so when they get caught in those nets they have about three minutes of terror before they drown," says world champion freediver William Trubridge. "They’re very intelligent, so during that time any other dolphins around would be screaming for help. Sometimes other members of the pod try to help them, and then sometimes they get caught and drown, too. There are shocking photos of multiple dead dolphins caught up in nets that have washed up on shore. There are other photos with dead dolphins lined up one after another. In spite of how comfortable and at home I am under water, the idea of being trapped in a net or a cave or something like that is still a huge nightmare for me. It’s a terrible thought to imagine Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins—and other dolphins all over the world—being caught in gill nets and drowning." Please help us protect them!
“Several countries including Italy on behalf of the EU, Austria, the UK, Monaco, Switzerland and Luxembourg, expressed grave concern over the status of Maui’s dolphin and welcomed the work of the Scientific Committee on this species.”
Our intervention, made “on behalf of 107 NGOs, highlighted the severe population declines of Maui’s dolphins (sub-species of Hector’s dolphin) and noted the unsustainable rates of bycatch. It drew attention to a motion in 2012 by the IUCN World Conservation Congress that called on New Zealand to urgently extend protection from a ban on gillnets and trawls to cover the entire habitat of Hector’s and Maui’s dolphins. It highlighted the Scientific Committee’s recommendations calling for the prohibition of gillnet and trawl fisheries across Maui’s dolphin habitat and noted that in May 2014, the Committee had emphasised that restrictions introduced in 2013 fall significantly short of those previously recommended and of what is required. It noted that large scale marine mining, seismic testing and oil and gas production were additional threats but stated that if human induced mortality is curtailed, the Maui’s dolphins are not doomed to extinction. It concluded by requesting that the IWC uphold the recommendations from the Scientific Committee’s 2013 and 2014 meetings.
Hungary stressed the importance of all cetaceans and that action is urgently needed, particularly for Maui’s dolphin with just 50 animals remaining.
New Zealand’s response was as brief as it was poor and “NZ noted the comments of all who had spoken although it did not necessarily agree. New Zealand will continue to advocate for Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins, and has imposed restrictions on set net and trawl net fishing and uses observers, in addition to areas closed to trawling, as reported in their national Cetacean Conservation Report. New Zealand will continue to provide data to the Scientific Committee, but noted that management must be balanced and is broader than just the IWC.”
We hope you'll agree that it was well worth the trip! NZ can't hide behind hollow excuses that aren't convincing anyone any longer. We'll be posting this on our website soon but thought you'd like to know right away.
On 3 December 15 times freediving world record holder and Maui's and Hector's dolphin ambassador William Trubridge will attempt to do what noone has been able to do before: to dive 102 metres and back on a single breath without the aid of fins or weights. Two days before he faces his biggest challenge yet, William asks you to support him by making a donation to our Maui's Dolphin Defence Fund. Together we can save Maui's dolphins!
I was accompanied by Maui’s dolphin expert Dr Liz Slooten who was on a rare visit to the UK. Thanks to everyone who supported our event and turned it into a tremendous and positive show of strength for Maui's dolphins. Please help us to keep the pressure up by making a donation today. Any amount you can spare will be put to good use to fight for the dolphins' survival. Thank you! >((('>