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Four endangered NZ sea lions have been killed in commercial fishing nets in one week, making this the third day in a row endangered animals have been confirmed dead at the hands of the commercial fishing industry.

“Four endangered sea lions in a single week, five so far this year, is sickening and totally preventable” says Forest & Bird Ocean Advocate Katrina Goddard.

“Commercial trawlers should not be fishing in the same patch of water an endangered animal lives and breeds in. There is no way anyone would be allowed to accidentally kill four kiwi in the course of making a profit, so why are commercial fishers allowed to kill endangered native animals?

“This week, we’ve already learnt of four Hector’s dolphins dying in trawl nets, and five endangered albatross dying on long lines.  Add to that four NZ sea lions, and we have a picture of an industry and set of regulations that are totally broken.” says Ms Goddard.

"New Zealand's oceans are some of the largest in the world, yet we have barely any marine reserves, and none at all in our deep oceans. There is nowhere in our deep waters that albatross, sea lions, and other precious animals are safe, and this will only change when the fishing industry is properly called into line," says Ms Goddard.

"New Zealand’s fishing industry is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of marine mammals and thousands of seabirds every year, and those are just the ones we know about. It’s time our Government stood up to bad apples like Talley’s and Te Ohu Kaimoana, who are blocking projects that would make a difference like marine reserves and cameras on boats."

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