The Greek seas are threatened with… bankruptcy as a result of decades of fishing without effective management. And the greatest threat? Intensive trawling, an industrial fishing practice, unknown to most in Greece.

The fishing season for trawlers began again on October 1st and will run until May 31st. Archipelagos already recorded many instances of illegal fishing, usually violating the minimum distance of 1.5 miles from the coast. Such incidents are mainly located in remote and inaccessible areas, usually during the night, with prevailing weather.

The vast destruction is caused when these vessels (sometimes illegally, sometimes legally) draw on sensitive and “protected” marine ecosystems so-called iron doors (2 “doors” per boat) – which weight up to one tonne each. Thus they cause devastation that will take centuries to recover, given the very slow growth of these ecosystems which are essential to the health and productivity of our seas. As the trawler pulls its nets at the bottom, it drags all the organisms, even small fish which have not yet reproduced or unmarketable species. Approximately 60% of fish is discarded dead at sea.

Due to emptying our seas, fishermen themselves barely survive, but also the future of marine mammals is threatened. Unfortunately, every year we see that it is increasingly difficult for dolphins and the critically endangered Mediterranean monk seals to find food.

Archipelagos fights everyday, day and night, against destructive fishing practices, focusing mainly in the central and eastern Aegean, but with action that covers all the Greek seas. With constant patrols, in close cooperation with coastal fishermen and a large network of people from many regions of Greece, Archipelagos records, in order to bring to justice, numerous instances of illegal and destructive fishing.