Theme - seal hunting

It is early morning sometime late winter last year. Out on the islands in the Skarv archipelago in the sea belt outside Stockholm, female seals and seal pups lie close on the rocks. These are mating times for the gray seals. Sea eagles soar above them. Hungry and ready to attack a weak and lonely pup….
reportage/redigering: Kajsa Grandell
Many want to blame the seal and the cormorant when the fish disappear, but porpoises also eat fish. So how come we have license hunting for seals but not porpoises? A political decision says researchers….
Reportage: Lena Scherman
Editing: Alexandre Gobatti
Photo: Kimmo Hagman, Johan Candert, Leif Eiransson, Simon Stanford, Anders Kronborg, Lunds Universitet
Researchers have now established that the harbor seals in the Kosterhavet area are becoming increasingly scarce. Last year, only half of the females gave birth to pups. This is according to research from the University of Gothenburg, following this year’s seal count. – We were very surprised. These low numbers cannot be dismissed year after year, says Karin Hårding, professor of zoological ecology at the University of Gothenburg and the leader of the project….
Text: Lina Mattsson
Photo: Daire Carroll/Göteborgs Universitet, Alexandre Gobatti/DSR
When the seal population had collapsed around 1980 and was almost completely extinct, the authorities put an end to all hunting. Seal protection areas were established, and all three species found along our coasts were protected. At the same time, we received EU directives to reduce emissions of DDT and PCBs. It led to the recovery of all three seal tribes….
Reporter: Lena Scherman
Editing: Alexandre Gobatti/Daniel Hager
Graphics: Daniel Hager

Latest articles

Text: Lina Mattsson
Photo: Jocke Höög/DS
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Text: TT/Nyhetsbyrån
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Other themes

ocean devotion

Many of us love the sea, the beach, the water and swimming in the waves, but there are those who care a little more than the rest of us. Those who, with commitment and passion...

the real rulers of the sea

The ocean's resources belong to all citizens. We want healthy seas, full of fish and shellfish. So how could the EU's seas be fished to the brink of ecological collapse? The overfishing is not an accident...

seal hunting

In an overfished sea, the seals have begun to move towards the coasts to look for food. Here they encroach on people's territory. From being nearly extirpated in the early 1980s...


I am now forbidden to fish for cod and the pike has disappeared from my bay. I’m looking for scapegoats. Who is responsible for the condition below the surface in the Baltic Sea? Small-scale professional fishermen along the east coast have been raising the alarm for several years that the herring has declined sharply. At the same time, the large-scale trawling in the open sea has continued to catch large quantities, which have gone directly to the fishmeal factories in Denmark….
Krönika: Peter Löfgren
Foto: Johan Candert, Simon Stanford
23 February, 2024
Biomass and biodiversity. Two rather dull and stiff words. But words often…
Text: Johan Candert
Photo: Johan Candert, Göran Ehlmé
24 August, 2023
The EU’s and Sweden’s marine policy has for several decades led to…
Text: Peter Löfgren
13 July, 2023
I sit in the boat and jig. It rhythmically jerks with the…
Chronicle: Folke Rydén
Photo: Folke Rydén
10 March, 2023
I have had many pets in my life. First I had budgies….
Chronicle: Daniel Hager
Photo: Daniel Hager


All citizens want fish-rich, healthy seas. The EU is governed democratically. So why are the EU’s seas fished out and on the brink of ecological collapse? The decisions are made in closed rooms, beyond democratic control….
Reportage: Peter Löfgren
Editing: Helena Fredriksson
Photo: Leif Eiransson
There is a place on earth where all creatures live their lives in balance with their surroundings. We dive into a functioning ecosystem, from the smallest plankton to the largest whale – where humans also have their place in the food chain. The harmony below the surface in the northern Norwegian waters is very unusual. Further south, the picture is different. On the Swedish west coast, several fish stocks have disappeared. What has happened here – where did life go? How could the sea have become like a – desert?…
Documentary: Deep Sea Production
New research has mapped the universe of fish, how they experience the world, that they have personalities. These new discoveries can affect how we look at fish and the fishing industry – and how we value the special universe that spreads beneath the surface….
Documentary: Deep Sea Production


Humanity has always sourced food from the sea. And fishing is an ancient way of doing so that can be traced back to the early Stone Age around 40,000 years ago. In the last 100 years, fish stocks have dramatically declined in the Western Sea and the Baltic Sea. And in most cases, overfishing is considered to be the major cause. …
Text: Lina Mattsson
Photo: Simon Stanford, Lena Scherman, Kimmo Hagman
In a report from 2020, published by BalticSea2020, the authors believe that large-scale fishing in the Baltic Sea is neither economically nor financially profitable for the state. On the contrary, it costs us all big money….
Reportage: Peter Löfgren
Editing: Helena Fredriksson
Photo: Leif Eiranson
The EU fisheries ministers have in a compromise agreed on this years herring fishing in the Baltic Sea next year. As usual, we can continue to fish, despite the fact that, according to many observers, the herring are running out. But there is one law that the ministers seem to forgotten about, which could lead to them having to tear up this year’s compromise. Paragraph 4.6 of the EU’s multi-year management plan for the Baltic Sea (MAP)….
Reportage: Lena Scherman
Animation: Natalia Quintana

Climate and Environment

Human Impact on the Seas is Enormous. Traces of human activity can be found everywhere in the world’s oceans. But what would happen if we allowed the sea to be for a while? Give them a chance to recover? …
Reportage: Daniel Hager/Göran Ehlmé
Photo: Göran Ehlmé
The film “What have we done?” which shows man’s ruthlessness towards our oceans was praised and named “Honorable mention” in the international competition DPG/Wetpixel Masters 2022….
The most likely scenario is that the beautiful red lionfish spread into the sea off the coast of Florida when an aquarium was smashed by Hurricane Andrew thirty years ago, writes the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Today, the red lionfish is completely dominant along the US coast and is out-competing other species in the ecosystem….
Reportage: Lena Scherman
Photo: Johan Candert, Göran Ehlmé

Baltic Sea

The Baltic Sea is a unique and sensitive sea where organisms live on the edge of what they can tolerate due to the low salinity. It has also been called the world’s most polluted inland sea due to eutrophication and the chemical cocktail caused by human activities….
Text: Lina Mattsson
Foto: Johan Candert, Kimmo Hagman, Simon Stanford
NASA has identified several hundred marine dead zones around the world. A dead zone is an area in the ocean where the oxygen level is too low for marine life to survive. Some of them occur naturally, but most of them are man-made. Seven out of the world’s ten largest dead zones are in the Baltic Sea. The biggest dead zone in the Baltic Sea is almost the size of Ireland….
Reportage: Daniel Hager
Research: Loke Nyberg
For an extended period, the cod population in the Baltic Sea has been facing severe challenges. Overfishing and environmental issues have taken a toll on their well-being, causing a decline in their health. Consequently, many of them have become thin, emaciated, and susceptible to diseases. However, a pertinent question arises: What happens when wild cod are given the opportunity to recuperate? …
Reportage: Johan Candert
Photo: Simon Stanford, Daniel Hager
UW-Photo: Johan Candert
Edit by: Alexandre Gobatti Ramos


Kwanele Mbatha makes a living by subsistence fishing and guiding tourists along South Africa’s Wild Coast but this fragile ecosystem faces the threat of overfishing, damage from oil and gas exploration, mining and many other human activities. …
Reportage: Simon Stanford
Photo: Simon Stanford
Editing: Niklas Berglund
They are extraordinary biodiversity hotspots. They absorb large amounts of CO2 and release oxygen. They fix nitrogen and detoxify the water. They are nurseries for fish and hundreds of marine organisms. But they are disappearing globally and one-third of the Earth’s coastline is affected….
Reportage: Ismaele Tortella/Delphin Ruché
Photo: Ismaele Tortella
I was really happy with my task, staying on the surface. I truly wanted to snorkel with dolphins, but the sharks made me hesitate. Finally, Joel convinced me to join him. It was so cool to see everything from below, and I finally got to snorkel with dolphins! But it was the whales that made this day unforgettable. …
Reportage: Ida Candert
Photography: Ida Candert, Joel Candert, Johan Candert, Nick Filmalter
Edit by: Alexandre Gobatti Ramos


Across the world scientists and biologists are studying a huge variety of dedicated and intricate subjects: jellyfish proteins; fish intelligence and whether octopus dream. On the other side of the coin are the naturalists…
Reportage: Jason Boswell
Photography: Jason Boswell
UW-Photography: Jason Boswell, Grant Brokensha
The population of seahorses in Ria Formosa in southern Portugal was probably the largest in the world. But in the mid-2010s, it collapsed, and 95% of the seahorses disappeared. Climate change, poachers, and environmental pollutants are believed to be the causes….
Reportage: Daniel Hager
South Africa has an incredibly rich diversity of sharks, representing nearly a quarter of all known species, some found nowhere else on the planet….
Reportage: Jason Boswell
BRUV-Footage: Cape RADD

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