I could have hoped that humanity would have learned the lesson that we know very little about the marine environment.
Over the last twelve months we have realized that a species of river dolphins is in fact two (see our section on river dolphins). When politicians tell us that there is 'X amount of cetaceans', often latter evidence is that we actually had 'B', 'C' and 'D' populations making up 'X-Y' of a total for the species. The whaling debate is littered with these issues.
The BBC now reports that a species of skate could become the first marine fish driven to extinction by commercial fishing. The BBC goes onto say 'A
study reveals that an error in the classification of the species has
meant researchers have failed to see just how close to the brink it is'.
'The research team, led by Samuel Iglesias from the Marine Biology
Station in Concarneau on the west coast of France, paints a very bleak
picture for the future of the flapper skate..
Dr Iglesias said: "The threat of extinction for European Dipturus together with mislabelling in fishery statistics highlight the need for a huge reassessment of population for the different Dipturus species in European waters.
"Without revision and recognition of its distinct status the world's largest skate, D. intermedia, could soon be rendered extinct."'