Net Losses

Thousands of Americans are probably by now preparing for their exotic summer vacations in the Mediterranean. But they’re not the only ones—chances are, an illegal fleet of Italian driftnetters is, too.

Although their target is swordfish, these driftnets—due to hit the waters between Spain and Turkey by early May—will scoop up anything in their path. Last year, 12 dead sperm whales washed up on the shores of the Balearic Islands, Spain’s tourist playground. Half were still wrapped in the driftnets that drowned them.