The Circle of Life: Seafood and Penguins

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The little bird who is always tuxedo-suited-up is in danger of extinction.  Once again humanity is the reason for this unfortunate occurrence.  Penguins are in trouble and we have got to do something to help them.  Their home is being destroyed as a result of what human industrialization is doing to the environment.  The countless ships traveling throughout their waters have been terrorizing the African Penguin's home for many years--in the last eight years the population has decreased over 50%!  Half of the African penguin population is gone!  Oil spills have assisted in destroying their food supply, we all need to eat to live and now the penguins have nothing to eat.  Fishermen threaten whatever amount of the food supply that isn't destroyed by pollution.  We often forget that the food we buy in the grocery store came from the wild--who knew! 

The oceans are taken advantage of so badly it's impossible for the fish to replenish themselves as fast as humans are capturing them.   Fishing seems like a swell activity that will result in lasting memories with grandfathers and grandsons on a holiday, the world needs to realize it will also result in extinction of many animals.   Elliot Norse of the Marine Conservation Biology Institute in Washington said, "We're not really fishing there.  We're mining there." when asked about deep sea fishing.  Did you know that it takes some types of fish 40 years to mature? That means certain types of fish do not have the ability to reproduce as quickly as we capture them.  The popular film Happy Feet features friendly penguin pals facing environmental difficulties.  The film has partnered up with Seafood Watch in order to raise awareness of the rapidly growing problem of overfishing. <-This link features a video entitled Where did all the fish go? That shares shocking statistics like "90% of the big fish in the world's oceans are gone." GONE!  Please check out the links below to learn more about how to help save seafood and our penguins.



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It’s hard to believe that penguins are as endangered as they are, mostly due to their constant presence in the media as cute and fascinating creatures. Movies like “March of the Penguins” and “Happy Feet” bring attention to penguins in a very efficient way due to the large group of people that watch these movies. I feel that in the stimulated culture that we live in, movies are a great way to raise awareness for certain global issues. The recent penguin movies that have come out have really perfected this method of spreading awareness in my opinion, because the movies are seen by two distinct audiences, both children and their parents, who are exposed to the messages brought forth by the movie. Children can become interested in what they have seen, and in their later life, if that interest still holds, they can work in a way that would improve or help out that interest. Parents already have the means to make a difference due to age and financial resources, and if they choose to do so, they can act on the messages from these movies the moment they leave the theater. The problem of course is motivating these people to take action. 9 times out of 10, people go to the movies to be entertained, not to take part in global environmental issues. I think what is crucial is having the ability to emotionally impact viewers in a way that would compel them to feel the need to do something, whether its donating money or actually going out and physically helping.
-AJ Carli

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