Many small scale, artisianal fisheries for "ornamental" fish and invertebrates are key economic drivers for reef side economies. However, we don't have a good handle on the scale of these fisheries. We are developing the ability to automatically capture species and volume information from shipping invoices to help understand this trade, detect illegal shipments, and determine the value of healthy coral reefs.
Data is the solution!
Each year the US receives approximately 8,000 shipments of marine fish. We have been working to create the ability to read shipping invoices to understand the patterns emerging in trade data.
In addition to the US, we are also working in the Philippines to understand the marine wildlife they export.
We are working toward a document matching system to ensure that invoice data match declaration data at both export and import.
This work is conducted in partnership with
Dr Andrew Rhyne of Roger Williams University
video coverage of our work by Ret Talbot
Wildlife Tech Crime Challenge prize winner
Revealing the Appetite of the Marine Aquarium Fish Trade: The Volume and Biodiversity of Fish Imported into the United States
Is sustainable exploitation of coral reefs possible? A view from the standpoint of the marine aquarium trade.