By Melodie Ruwet
The Galapagos Marine Reserve (GMR) covers 133,000 square kilometres and was established in 1998 to protect the remarkable biodiversity of the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador. Last month, Ecuadorian authorities in Guayaquil spotted a fleet of 260 Chinese boats fishing in the area around the GMR. This action was not contrary to international law, as the boats were sailing in international waters. Yet they were fishing in a zone where endangered migrating species transit to and from the reserve, such as silky shark, whale sharks, and hammerhead sharks.