Why are We Worried? By 2017 it is anticipated that 20 species of shark could be extinct
Why Are We Worried 100 million sharks are taken from the seas each year –due to hunting and by-catch
Why Are We Worried Sharks are long-lived (some live to 70), take a long time to reproduce, long gestation times Sharks are removed from the ocean before they can be replaced
Threats to Sharks Fishing for sharks- intentional and bycatch Finning- fins are cut off shark and the carcass is thrown into the water Medicinal use of shark cartilage to treat some cancers or reduce tumor growth Habitat degradation- pollution –Shark nurseries are nearshore, estuaries, mangrove forests, and rivers
Why Protect Sharks? Keeping ocean ecosystems in balance –top predators play a critical role in ocean ecosystems –hunt older, weaker or sick prey, keeps the prey population in good condition
For example, removal of tiger sharks from a tropical ecosystem resulted in a decline in tuna the tuna declined because the tiger sharks had been keeping other tuna predators in check.