“When you put good will out there it’s amazing what can be accomplished.”
Compose a file with copies of articles concerning the facts around shark cartilage for volunteers to take to shops and convince the owners to remove shark cartilage products from their shelves.
Letter in reaction to statements made by PhD student David Shiffman, claiming that a US shark fin ban would undermine sustainable shark fisheries.
Participating in the Project Aware "Divers for Mako" campaign by contributing to a "Shark advocates speak up" series of short clips and by donating pictures. The campaign aimed to convince ICCAT to set limiting fish quota's for Mako sharks in the Atlantic Ocean.
Advising the producers of "Second Nature", a Dutch documentary TV show for the production of the series "Save the Sharks" with biologist Freek Vonk.
Hosting 80 minute shark conservation presentation for the visitors of the "Shark" exhibition.
Hosting 80 minute shark conservation presentation for the volunteers and supporters of Sea Shepherd Belgium..
To use during the ICCAT summit aiming to strengthen the finning ban by banning at-sea removal of fins and set precautionary, science-based catch limits for blue sharks.
Hosting 80 minute shark conservation presentation for the visitors of the "Shark" exhibition.
Giving interview about diving with sharks and shark conservation during the opening celebration of their six months ongoing exposition on the biology and plight of sharks.
Donating multiple BlueShark pictures to the Maastricht (Netherlands) Museum of Natural Sciences for their "SHARK" exposition, a six months ongoing exposition on the biology and plight of sharks.
Pictures of exposition and official opening
Publishing a 9-page BlueShark article on the marine biodiversity in Fiji waters and reefs.
Supporting campaigns of likeminded organisations. Examples:
* Atiracan Asociación Amigos de los Tiburones y Rayas: For the establishment of a shark and ray sanctuary in the Canary Islands.
* The Global Shark Conservation Initiative: To put an end to the Australian shark cull policy.
* Singapore without fins: For a ban on the consumption and trade of shark fins in Singapore.
* Great British Oceans: For the establishment of fully protected marine reserves at British overseas territories.
* Alex Hofford campaign: To ban shark fin transports by UPS
Advising the producers of this Belgian VTM TV-channel on the plight of sharks, shark behaviour and referring them to contacts for extra information and filming opportunities.
Excerp of the tv show (test if sharks are attrackted by human blood)
BlueShark Conservation participated in the Climate March in Ostend with ocean related climate change information.
Co-writing an article on the request of diving magazine "Duiken", on the stigmatization of white sharks in Australia.
Drafting the letters and sending them after approval by the coalition, asking the Belgian Minister of Animal Welfare for investigation and the closure of the Belgian Boudewijn Seapark dolphinarium.
Second letter to Flemish minister of animal welfare Ben Weyts
Drafting the press release and sending it + submitting it for publication after approval by the Jurat and coalition. The press release refutes the lies in a statement by Boudewijn Seapark and asks the Flemish minister of welfare to investigate the dolphinarium.
Drafting the letter and sending it + submitting it for publication after approval by the coalition. The letter informed the Flemish Governments Social Service of grave irregularities at the Belgian Boudewijnpark dolphinarium, because the departement sold discounted tickets to the dolphinarium to their employees.
Due to our letter, the Flemish Governement Social Service ceased selling entry tickets for the dolphinarium to their employees.
The open letter was also published, in online magazine PiepVandaag.
Reading this published letter prompted the jurat of Flemish municipaly Herent to ban their local summer school from visiting the dolphinarium.
Co-organising a European demo in Brussels along with other national and international NGO's for the closure of all EU dolphinariums.
The self-explanatory loop presentation centered around the plight of sharks and the lack of fishing quota's for sharks in the Atlantic Ocean. In coöperation with The British Shark Trust, the presentation was accompanied by the No Limits - No Future .pdf petition and documentation.
Open letter expressing deep concerns as the Spanish Atlantic longline fleets are in no way sustainable.
Writing conservation foreword for the "Little Book of Scuba Diving" by Kelvin J. Knight titled "Giving back to the Ocean".
Foreword (in English) in the link, click on the book and read at page 3
Sending opinion to support the proposed rule to ban the at-sea removal of smooth dogfish fins and to apply science based dogfish catch limits.
BlueShark Conservation led the coalition campaign "Warrelniet": a Belgian national campaign in coalition with Sea Shepherd Belgium, Natuurpunt and Sea First Belgium.
Within three weeks after handing over the petition with +22.600 signatures, the Flemish government decided to issue a ban on the recreational use of gill nets nation wide.
Drafting and publishing an article on the illegal import and sale of three individual porbeagle sharks in Belgium.
Due to the BlueShark Conservation article and reporting, the Belgian CITES officer investigated the matter and apprehended the importer.
The BlueShark Conservation article explains the sightings and defuses the panic surrounding these sightings
Donating marine pictures for the proposal to list mobula rays on the CMS (Convention on the conservation of migratory species) protection appendices in November 2014.
Drafting and publishing an update article on the Warrelniet-Mailles Fatales campaign on behalf of Sea Shepherd Belgium, Natuurpunt, Sea First Belgium and BlueShark Conservation.
Drafting and publishing an article to oppose the distribution of free tickets for Boudewijn Seapark dolphnarium by Flemish P-magazine, on behalf of Sea Shepherd Belgium, Bite Back, Dauphins Libres and BlueShark Conservation.
Writing 30 minute shark talk for kids approx. 12 years old with powerpoint presentation, video clips and a Shark Quiz, for DiveWise Training and Education Centre in Antwerp, Belgium.
Cooperating with NGO’s Natuurpunt, Sea Shepherd Belgium and Sea First Belgium in a campaign to establish a nation wide ban on the recreational use of gill nets on Belgian shores.
BlueShark services included among other things: Designing and implementing a campaign strategy. Attracting NGO Natuurpunt (largest nature organisation in Flanders) to take part in the campaign. Designing, organising and preparing a beach event to launch the campaign (with information booths, a Kids Club, a sand sculptures contest with prices, a maze contest with a Belgian VIP and a music preformance by a Belgian band). Designing a 50x30 metre maze with poles and rope and constructing it on the beach. Finding sponsors for the funding of the event. Announcing and promoting the beach event and campaign in the media. Conducting research on the issue and writing an extensive motivation for the campaign. Also writing all other texts of the campaign website including the updates in the news section. Contacting NGO's and governmental organizations, requesting permission to use their pictures for the campaign. Creating the online and .pdf campaign petitions. Creating e- and printed postcards for supporters to send to the mayors of coastal municipalies which allow gill nets on their beaches.
English version online petition (main petition lists were in Flemish and French)
Article written for gill nets campaign, published in Belgian "Hippocampus" diving magazine.
Drafting and sending a letter to the Flemish Government on behalf of BlueShark Conservation and Sea First Belgium, opposing their decision to shelve two separate cases of illegal basking shark (parts) retention. Both times the boat crew was (partially) the same.
In the first case the crew aimed to land a basking shark in the harbour of Zeebrugge. Two years later, during a routine check, two sliced off basking shark fins were found hidden in the ships freezer. Both cases were shelved.
Grand scale distribution of a manta ray survey on request of NGO Shark Savers, for Manta Ray of Hope, Manta Trust, the Indonesian Manta Project and Blue Sphere Media campaign to establish nationwide legal protection for manta rays in Indonesia. Reference: Mary O’Malley (Shark Savers / Wild Aid / Manta Trust).
Publication of a 9-page+cover article on the conservation of sharks of the Azore Islands and the Atlantic Ocean in the Dutch diving magazine “Duiken”.
Cooperating with NGO's WWF Belgium and Natuurpunt, to draft a press release opposing the Flemish Fisheries Marketing Centre (VLAM)'s recommandation to buy and consume spiny dogfish/spurdog.
“The Shark Project" included a year-long contest for secondary school students, a press conference, a prize ceremony, a guided field trip to encounter marine life in Florida for the grand prize winners and the production of a short documentary on ocean conservation. The documentary was distributed back to the secondary schools in Belgium to raise awareness among the students through the experience of their peers while they were in Florida and to promote discussing ocean exploitation and preservation in the classrooms.
The Belgian National Lottery was convinced of the necessity of this project which was executed at the time of the EU legal proposal to ban shark finning in the EU and therefore funded the campaign with a grant.
Pictures Press Presentation
Pictures Prize Ceremony
Pictures study trip conservation contest grand prize winners Set 1, Set 2, Set 3
Pictures premiere of the Shark Project documentary "Sea and Learn"
Shark Project Documentary "Sea and Learn" Online
Publication of an article in the Dutch online magazine “Piep Vandaag” on the decision of the West-Australian government to cull white sharks in the vicinity of popular beaches.
Drafting a press release in cooperation with NGO’s WWF Belgium and Natuurpunt, urging the food sector to discourage the consumption of porbeagle meat in Belgium.
Published in the online version of the Dutch diving magazine "Duiken" and referred to by several other websites.
Publication of a 5-page article on the plight of sharks, shark finning, shark legislation and shark byproducts in the Belgian diving magazine “Hippocampus”.
On behalf of the Belgian NGO Sea First and as a board member of this organisation, contacting and convincing restaurants to cease selling shark meat in their restaurants.
Lobby he Belgian attaché of permanent representation to the EU, for NGO PEW’s Shark Alliance campaign during the EU legal proposal to close the loopholes in the EU finning legislation.
Initiating and executing the grand scale mailing. Contacting NGO's, dive tourism companies and travel companies all over the world, to gather support for the legal proposal to establish a shark sanctuary in Raja Ampat.
Co-found, administer and initiate a multitude of grassroots campaigns for Facebook page “The Global Shark Initiative” with 26.200 members. (Page was removed on the request of the co-founder in November 2011)
Article by Michelle Kirk Marks on GSI and involving top chef Gordon Ramsay in shark conservation.
Campaign featured on the Let Sharks Live Blog
Grand scale e-mailing aiming to prevent the construction of a mega resort with a marina at an ecological extremely important and fragile area.
The campaign was successful and the area was later designated a world heritage area.