Wednesday, April 04, 2007
Sharks in trouble
Sharks have been in trouble for a while now as they are apex predators in thier environment and have a very slow reproduction rate. I personally gave up eating sharks (except on very rare occasions) more than 5 years ago. This was due to the fact that immature sharks were coming into the market. George monbiot has this to say on shark conservation.
Sharks deserve the conservation status we give to the giant panda
Marine predators are on the verge of extinction, but the fishing industry still rips the environment to shreds with impunity
If these animals lived on land there would be a global outcry. But the great beasts roaming the savannahs of the open seas summon no such support. Big sharks, giant tuna, marlin and swordfish should have the conservation status of the giant panda or the snow leopard. Yet still we believe it is acceptable for fishmongers to sell them and celebrity chefs to teach us how to cook them.
A study in this week's edition of Science reveals the disastrous collapse of the ocean's megafauna. The great sharks are now wobbling on the edge of extinction. Since 1972 the number of blacktip sharks has fallen by 93%, tiger sharks by 97% and bull sharks, dusky sharks and smooth hammerheads by 99%. Just about every population of major predators is now in freefall. Another paper, published in Nature four years ago, shows that over 90% of large predatory fishes throughout the global oceans have gone.