Positive Conservation News: 7 Recent Marine Success Stories

November 09, 2021


Beside the sea is my happy place, but it's been a while since I was last near the ocean and I'm missing the crashing sound of the waves and the salty, breezy air. So, I am taking us to the seaside for the latest instalment of positive environmental news.

1. This summer, Coquet Island's Roseate Terns population broke breeding records for the 6th year in a row! This year 150 pairs bred, up from 104 pairs in 2016 thanks to dedicated conservation efforts to save Britain's rarest nesting seabird. The island also saw a record breaking season for Common Terns and Kittiwakes.

2. It was another record breaking season at RSPB reserves across the Solent, with 25 little tern and 253 sandwich tern chicks successfully fledged. This is positive news for these birds, who are under increasing threat from human disturbance. The RSPB plan to create and restore habitat in this area to protect these precious breeding sites.

3. Scientists have completed the first map of the world's coral reefs, which features nearly 100,000 square metres of coral reefs around the globe, along with other information about about the ocean and seafloor. It is hoped that this map will help conservationists to save coral reefs, which are under serious threat from climate change, and inspire governments to act to protect them.

4. Numbers of sea turtle nests in Cape Verde have soared in the last 5 years, up to almost 200,000 in 2020 from 10,725 in 2015. Researchers believe this is thanks to improved conservation measures, including beach patrols and stronger laws against killing, trading, and eating turtles. Although this is great news, threats still remain including plastic pollution, entrapment in fishing nets, coastal development, and climate change. A turtle's sex is determined by temperature, so there is a skew toward females due to increasing temperatures affecting reproduction and genetic diversity.

Images: Frank McKenna and Erin Simmons

5. A seabird hotspot was discovered by a collaboration led by BirdLife International which used tracking and population data to map 21 seabird species. This hotspot is used by up to 5 million seabirds from over 56 colonies - the first discovery of seabird concentrations of this magnitude ever document on the high seas. Now, 15 governments and the EU are working towards designating it a Marine Protected Area - the first time one has been designated from tracking data in the high seas.





Nature's Good News