End Dolphin Slaughter as Deadly By-Product of Dangerous Nets

Target: Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Environment;, Forest, and Climate Change for India

Goal: Reduce use of gill nets that kill dolphins and other innocent marine life.

An alarming 80 percent of dolphins have been eradicated in one major ocean. The suspected culprit behind this mass die-off is a largely unregulated form of tuna capture called gill net fishing. By some estimates, for every 1,000 pounds of tuna caught with this dangerous practice, over 150 dolphins become collateral casualties. Other marine life, including turtles and whales, could face the same deadly fate.

Tuna fishermen in the Indian Ocean use gill nets for roughly a third of their catches. These devices are so lethal to other marine animals because they do not discriminate in what they ensnare. The ultra-thin nets lay in the water and can appear invisible to any unfortunate animal that encounters them. Dolphins can experience a particularly prolonged and painful passing as they attempt to extricate themselves from these death traps. When a dead dolphin is discovered in the nets, the poor animal is often just tossed unceremoniously over the side of the boat, the death unreported.

Experts believe many changes implemented by countries could curtail this crisis. For one, alternate fishing methods that provide much more safety for marine life should be advocated and encouraged. Fishing nets that remain in use could be equipped with sensors that repel dolphins and other large animals. Finally, fishing industries as a whole should be subject to much more management, oversight, and regulation. While multiple nations contribute to these tragic deaths, the populous India is among the worst offenders and therefore should set a strong, conservation-focused leadership precedent.

Sign this petition to demand this country not sacrifice its precious marine life for the sake of a dangerously outdated practice.


Dear Minister Javadekar,

Fishing within the Indian Ocean provides an undeniable boon to your economy. This practice, however, also takes a devastating toll on this ocean’s wondrous marine life. You do not have to boost profits at the expense of dolphins, whales, turtles, and so many other irreplaceable marvels.

Gill net usage poses the most imminent danger to these animals, and this practice is already estimated to have depleted dolphin populations by 80-plus percent. Other, less detrimental fishing methods can and should be pushed by India’s government. During a hopeful transition away from these deadly nets, at the very least you could invest in technologies that repel and protect defenseless animals caught within the nets by accident. Perhaps most importantly, demand accountability from the fishing industry. Most of these slaughters go unreported and unacknowledged. Oversee and better manage the fishing industry by ensuring more stringent regulations are put in place and followed.

With a concerted effort, India can become a respected leader in responsible, humane marine industry practices driven by a reverence for all living beings.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Juanma Carrillo

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  1. Jaime Perez says:

    People have no conscience when it comes to animals. It’s all a greed thing.

  2. Caroline Dinnage says:

    India is becoming a close second to China in their cruel and inhumane treatment towards animals.
    I hope they believe in karma because it’s coming for them!

  3. Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Environment;, Forest, and Climate Change for India

    Please ban use of gill nets that kill dolphins and other innocent marine life.Please protect the precious and beautiful Dolphins and other precious marine life from these vile and evil torturous and murdering Gill Nets.

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