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Government pledges protection for world's coral reefs
The Coral Reef Life Declaration encourages countries to join forces to protect coral reefs.

The UK has officially joined the Coral Reef Life Declaration

The UK government has pledged to safeguard the world’s coral reefs from climate change and rising sea temperatures.

Speaking at the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton on Monday (9 April), environment minister Thérèse Coffey announced that the UK had officially joined the Coral Reef Life Declaration.  

“Few people know the waters around the UK contain riches to rival the tropics – with our waters home to a vast array of cold water coral reefs that protect important marine life,” she said.

“Through tapping into the UK’s world-leading marine science and working with our partners across the Commonwealth, we will help to safeguard this vital habitat and protect our oceans for future generations.”

The Coral Reef Life Declaration encourages countries to join forces to protect coral reefs. Launched by Prince Albert II of Monaco in October 2017, it has already been signed by 12 countries, including Fiji, Australia and the Seychelles.

The oceans surrounding the UK are home to cold-water corals which are more than 8,000 years old. The only known coral reef in English waters is located off the Cornish coast and is protected as a Marine Conservation Zone. There are also extensive reefs off the West coast of Scotland.

The announcement comes one week ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, where member states will gather in London to agree further global measures to protect our oceans.

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Vets save premature penguin chick

News Story 1
 Vets have saved a tiny Humboldt penguin chick after her egg was accidentally broken by her parents. Keepers at ZSL London Zoo were shocked to find the chick, named Rainbow, still alive and rushed her straight to the Zoo’s on-site veterinary clinic.

It was a little way to go until the chick should have hatched, so the process was touch and go. Vets removed bits of shell from around the chick with tweezers until she could be lifted out and placed in a makeshift nest.

Rainbow is now in a custom-built incubation room where she spends her days cuddled up to a toy penguin. Keepers will hand-fed Rainbow for the next 10 weeks until she is healthy enough to move to the penguin nursery.  

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News Shorts
BVA infographic to help shoppers understand farm assurance schemes

An infographic to help members of the public understand farm assurance schemes has been produced by the BVA. The infographic outlines BVA’s priorities for animal welfare and shows whether or not the schemes address these priorities in their standards.

BVA president John Fishwick said: “The infographic is not intended to be a league table but to allow people to understand what aspects of animal health and welfare are addressed by assurance schemes so that they can decide which scheme best aligns with their own individual preferences and priorities."