Over 31% of our global fish stocks are overfished. WWF works with stakeholders to reform fisheries management globally, focusing on sustainable practices that conserve ecosystems, but also sustain livelihoods and ensure food security.
The incidental capture and mortality of non-target marine fish and animals during fishing is known as bycatch . WWF works towards the elimination of environmentally-destructive fishing gear and the modification of existing gear to reduce bycatch.
Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing
IUU occurs across all types of fisheries, within national and international waters, and in small to large-scale industrialised operations. WWF works with fisheries management authorities and the fishing industry to stop IUU fishing.
Bottom trawling is the towing or dragging of fishing gear along the seafloor, a widespread fishing method that can cause substantial and irreversible harm to fragile benthic ecosystems. WWF works with stakeholders to minimise the impact of bottom trawling/gear on the environment, including investigating and implementing alternative low-impact gear and practices. We also promote marine protected areas (MPAs), which provide protection for key species and habitats from trawling.
Threatened and endangered species
WWF is committed to stopping the decline of threatened and endangered species, such as marine turtles and dugongs, and works towards their recovery. WWF led projects have sought to modify fishing gear to minimise bycatch from fisheries, reduce unsustainable harvests and illegal fishing, and afford protection to sensitive marine habitats.