News Releases


Skates and Rays


WCS Welcomes $1B Protecting Our Planet Challenge Commitment to Protect the World’s Oceans

“This remarkable commitment is a major step toward sustainably managed seas which is so critical to nature, people and climate.” Simon Cripps, Executive Director of the WCS Marine Program

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PHILANTHROPIC ORGANIZATIONS COMMIT $1B USD TO HELP PROTECT 30 PERCENT OF THE OCEAN BY 2030

The Protecting Our Planet Challenge will invest at least $1 billion USD to support the creation, expansion and management of marine protected areas and Indigenous and locally governed marine and coastal areas by 2030.

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A Conservation Coalition Launches the Shark and Ray Recovery Initiative

A conservation coalition consisting of WCS, WWF, Elasmo Project, and James Cook University have launched the Shark and Ray Recovery Initiative (SARRI) as a global response to bring sharks and rays back from the brink.

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WCS Launches New Visual ID Guide to Identify Illegal Shark Products

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) launched a new, visual identification tool to enable trade inspectors and customs officials to quickly identify and seize illegally obtained or traded shark products.

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Gabon Provides Blueprint for Protecting Oceans, Protecting 26 Percent of its EEZ in a Network of 20 Marine Protected Areas

Gabon's network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) provides a blueprint that could be used in many other countries, experts say.

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Cuba Names East Los Colorados Archipelago a New Protected Area (English and Spanish)

Cuba has just declared Este del Archipiélago de Los Colorados (“East of Los Colorados Archipelago”), a new marine protected area. This new MPA covers about half of one of the four major archipelagos surrounding the country, and hosts exceptional marine life including Antillean manatees, American crocodiles, and critically endangered Hawksbill sea turtles.

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Lighted Nets Dramatically Reduce Bycatch of Sharks and Other Wildlife While Making Fishing More Efficient

In a win-win for commercial fisheries and marine wildlife, researchers have found that using lighted nets greatly reduced accidental bycatch of sharks, rays, sea turtles, and unwanted finfish.

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New Marine Protected Area Isla Ají Safeguards Important Coastal Ecosystems (English and Spanish)

Ratifying its global commitments, the Government of Colombia has recently declared Isla Ají a new marine protected area (MPA). Spanning 24,600 ha (95 square miles), this important and beautiful nature reserve will serve to protect threatened wildlife and safeguard the wellbeing of local coastal communities who depend on the area for food and their livelihoods. 

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A New Marine Protected Area to Protect Biodiversity and Coral Habitat Around Saint Martin’s Island in Bangladesh

The Government of Bangladesh has declared a new marine protected area (MPA) spanning 1,743 square kilometers (672 square miles) around Saint Martin’s Island, a region which represents 1.5 percent of Bangladesh’s exclusive economic zone.

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Study: Remote Ocean Wilderness Areas are “Living Time Machines,” Teeming with Large Fish

A new, widespread study of the global state of marine coral reef wilderness by WCS, NGS, and university collaborators found that remote ocean wilderness areas are sustaining fish populations much better than some of the world’s best marine reserves.

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