Enormous Chinese Fishing Fleet Continues To Fish off the Coast of Galapagos Islands, Reportedly Falsifying Their Locations

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An enormous Chinese fishing fleet of 248 vessels continues to fish off the coast of the Galapagos Islands … and some ships are reportedly falsifying their locations.

The Galapagos marine reserve is famous for being one of the world’s most unusual ecosystems with areas of rich biodiversity.

Although conservation efforts are producing an abundance of marine life … the fish supply is also attracting the attention of Chinese fishing fleets that have depleted their own domestic waters.

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⚠️WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGES⚠️ Please share this post and sign this new petition in the @savethereef bio to protect the Galápagos Islands from 200+ Chinese Fishing Vessels! Right now, these vessels are operating all around the Galapagos Islands, home to one of the most bio-diverse ecosystems on the planet, including species such as whale sharks, scalloped hammerheads, Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, manta rays & more. The site where the Chinese vessels are located is a major migration route for endangered species. A whale shark named Hope was last recorded going 8 knots in the area where the fishing vessels are operating and sadly that is faster than a whale shark can swim. Three years ago, a single vessel was intercepted straying into the protected area around the Galapagos Islands and 300 tons of scalloped hammerhead shark fins were found onboard…that’s just 1 vessel & right now are now 200+ vessels operating! This massive fleet is positioned between the Galápagos Islands Economic Exclusion Zone & Ecuador’s territorial border, which simply means what this fleet is doing is “legal”, because fishing in this area is not regulated since it’s in international waters, & no country has a jurisdiction. But marine life in the area don’t know the borders so WE MUST PROTECT THEM! While China says they will stop fishing in the area from September to November, we need ALL fishing to stop & to do that we need your help! Please sign the petition using the link in our bio to stop ALL fishing in this critical area, directed to the UN to help protect the biodiversity of the Galapagos. And everyone must join in this URGENT fight so share this post with your followers & tag influencers, celebrities and media & tell EVERYONE to share /sign the petition too or else the marine life here, including many endangered species, will be decimated! Thank you @sharkguardian_mel @oceana @nakaweproject @brinkleydavies @juliabarnes1 #sosgalapagos #galapagos #karmagawa #saveouroceans #savethereef

A post shared by SaveTheReef (@savethereef) on

The ships are reported to be practicing indiscriminate fishing that is causing fear for the deterioration of fauna that lives in the area. 

It’s also being reported that some of the vessels are turning off their automatic tracking systems to avoid detection when operating in protected waters.

The fleet is so large that their use of lights make them look like a city at night.

Even though the transfer of cargo between shipping vessels is prohibited under international maritime law, the fleet includes fishing boats with refrigerated containers to hold huge catches.

The concerns about illegal and unregulated fishing by Chinese ships aren’t without precedence. 

In 2017, the Ecuadorian navy seized a Chinese ship, named Fu Yuan Yu Leng 999, in the Galapagos marine reserve and found containers filled with over 6,000 frozen sharks — including endangered hammerhead and whale sharks!

At Karmagawa and SaveTheReef we think this situation is heartbreaking … with all the work different organizations have done to protect the Galapagos Marine Reserve and its marine life, it should be respected by everyone else.

Already, a whale shark named Hope that was being studied around the Galapagos Islands has lost the GPS signal that was being used to track it. The last signal came from the area being patrolled by the Chinese fishing boats so it’s believed she’s been caught.

 jjsupasit srisawthsak/Shutterstock

Please sign our petition calling for a moratorium on fishing in the high seas surrounding the Galapagos Islands so we can protect this beautiful ecosystem and its thriving marine life.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram and share the information with your family and loved ones so that they can spread the word. 

Have them watch this powerful video …


The director of this video, Amir Zakeri, created a masterclass for anyone in the Karmagawa and SaveTheReef community who would like to use film to tell stories that can help the environment and all its voiceless animals. If that’s you, here’s a discount to get 50% off the regular price.  

All proceeds go to great causes, so you can feel good about investing in yourself. Get started now

What do you think about the danger the Galapagos marine reserve and its marine life is facing? Leave a comment below.

(Cover image:  Richard Whitcombe/Shutterstock)

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