Feb 1

We’ve asked conservation organisations around the world to nominate a species that they believe to be overlooked, underappreciated and unloved, and tell us why they think that they deserve a fair share of the limelight, this Valentine’s Day.

Each nominee’s story is featured on the Arkive blog with information on the species, what makes them so special, the conservation organisation that nominated them and how they are working to save them from extinction.

Click the ‘unloved species’ tag above to see all of the nominations and their blogs.

Once you have perused the blogs you can vote for your favourite to help get them into the top ten unloved species and get them the recognition that they truly deserve! Share your favourite with others using the #LoveSpecies hashtag on Twitter and Facebook and tell them why they should vote for them too. Voting closes on February 14th at 23:59 PST (07:59 GMT).

Join us and our conservation partners in celebrating and raising awareness for some of the world’s most unloved species this Valentine’s Day!

Name of species: Winter skate

Nominated by: IKANAWTIKET Environmental Inc

Conservation status: Endangered

Why IKANAWTIKET love the winter skate: The winter skate with its cape like body tapering into a long tail is a member of the shark family of fish which have survived the cataclysmic geological events of the formation of new oceans and new continents.  When we consider the survivor odds then with the survivor odds of our world today, the conservation status of “Endangered” for the winter skate speaks to the pillage, plunder and devastating character of the animal “homo sapiens”. It is an example of the unique evolution of a still present prehistoric creation that has adapted to the shores of different continents and different oceans.  We love the winter skate because it takes time to mature and it takes time to lay twenty to fifty embryo within a special anchored “purse” where the embryo slowly forms to begin life on its own after evolving for twenty-two months within a protective purse.

Threats to the winter skate’s survival: Of the 58 known extinctions of fish worldwide, 13 have been extinctions of skates. In the Atlantic, the biggest threat to winter skates is dragging for clams and scallops and bottom trawling for groundfish. The sandy and gravelly areas where winter skate purses are attached are also the preferred areas for scallops and clams. Over 90% of all winter skate bycatch and discards are from dragging and bottom trawling gear. The fishing gear destroys winter skate purses and habitat.

Information on IKANAWTIKET’s work with the winter skate: We at IKANAWTIKET Environmental Inc. are constantly advocating for our species to open their eyes, turn their heads to hear, open their mouth and nose to take in the air, sights and sounds of life on Mother Earth.  We try to influence government agencies, non-government organisations and educational institutions to foremost accept the fact that we are a part of creation, that there is a price to pay for our trespass and transgression on the life of other creatures. We would like to see a ban on destructive fishing practices, legal protection and more awareness of the winter skate, especially when celebrating Oceans Day in June.

Find out more about IKANAWTIKET and their campaign to save the winter skate

Discover more true ray and skate species on Arkive

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