Video of delegate celebrations as Manta’s are voted for CITES Appendix II with overwhelming majority.
- Sea Save
The final plenary for all the elasmobranch proposals for restricted trade is tomorrow morning in Bangkok. They all won by at least a 2/3 majority, but secret ballots and politics can still overturn the decisions (e.g. Porbeagle sharks at CITES in 2008 and 2010).
Advocates at CITES have been working tirelessly since Monday’s votes to encourage delegates to #StandByYourVote. Fins crossed, and tune in for news tomorrow!
Devil Ray breach… no source, but too awesome not to share.
**Please remember to credit the incredible work people put into shots like this.
[EDIT] Source: themanvern
Landmarks on the Dorsal fin of a shark.
These features can be used to identify different shark species. The inability to ID shark species via their fins has been an argument used to exemplify that the trade in shark fins can’t be regulated by species.
Dr. Demian Chapman and the Pew Environment Trust show us that that simply is not an excuse anymore, and have made a guide to prove just that. An just in time for CITES, where three types of shark are up for listing.
2. Oceanic White Tip
3. Hammerhead Sharks ( I say this because if one of the three species are listed, the other two will be by proxy because their fins look too similar to distinguish)
Fins from 14 large-bodied shark species make up roughly 40% of the global fin trade. The oceanic whitetip and three hammerheads in this guide are included in this group and were estimated to constituted 7-9% of traded fins in 2000. Shark fin traders in Asia visually sort fins from these species into specific trade categories using the shape and color of the fin.
This guide is intended to help enforcement and customs personnel in the provisional identification of the first dorsal fins of these five shark species. In law enforcement situations, this could provide probable cause to hold questionable fins, so that expert opinion could be sought or genetic testing could be conducted to confirm the field identification.
These sharks are proposed for listing in CITES Appendix II. This means trade would still be allowed, but under tighter regulation that should ensure the products are coming from a sustainable source. Therefore it is vital to be able to identify their fins.
Science might not always mean Conservation, but Conservation is built on good science.
Extinction is not an option
“I designed this wallpaper to raise awareness regarding the highly needed protection of sharks and rays.” Designed by Claudia Schmitt from Germany.
Check out this awesome desktop wallpaper depicting the four elasmobranch species up for listing by the Convention for International Trade of Endangered Flora and Fauna (CITES).
Signatory countries of this convention (almost all of them) are not allowed to trade in these animals and their parts without the appropriate permits. These are issued for things like biopsy samples etc., and are an important tool for restricting wildlife trade.
You may have heard a lot about the upcoming CITES meeting. Elasmobranchs are sorely lacking from CITES listing with only ten species currently listed.
Sharks and rays not only suffer from direct exploitation (fins and gill rakers), but are a significant component of by-catch in several fishing methods. On top of that, many are slow-growing, slow gestating species whose populations need much more time than we’re giving to recover.
The meeting in Bangkok is just around the corner, and you can help encourage your country representative to vote to protect these species. Who is your country representative you ask? Well, there’s a handy list from the CITES website!
So get writing, typing or whatever creative means you have of getting your message across! We’re running out of time.
Sir Richard Branson PSA - Protect Manta Rays
Little bit of casual learning…
Hopefully be able to tell you more about these soon ;-)
EUROPEAN UNION PROHIBITS SHARK FINNING
Shark protection groups have applauded the move, saying it marked a key chapter for shark conservation.
by AP staff
The European parliament on Thursday called a definitive halt to shark finning, the long contested practice of fishermen slicing off fins and throwing the live body overboard to drown.
The EU prohibited shark finning in 2003, but an exemption allowed fishermen with special permits to remove the fins from their carcass out at sea and bring back the remainders or land them in different ports.
In March, fisheries ministers endorsed a proposal to force fishermen to bring sharks to port intact, but the measure needed the approval of the parliament.
“The measure closes long-standing enforcement loopholes in EU policy on shark finning, will improve the collection of valuable data about shark catches, and will help to prevent the trade of fins from threatened shark species,” the conservation group OCEANA in a statement.
Asia’s taste for shark fin soup is viewed as a key threat to sharks, with marine protection groups saying up to 73 million are killed annually to satisfy demand for the delicacy...
(read more: Discovery News) (photo: Corbis)
This is HUGE news :D
What is the Biggest Shark? A Chart Shows the Diversity of Shark Sizes
Sharks come in all sizes. The largest is the whale shark, which has been known to get as large as 18 meters (60 feet). The smallest fits in your hand. Find out how these modern sharks stack up against the ancient Carcharodon megalodon. And if you’re a fan of great white sharks, you can download a shark-themed board game, track a shark named Omoo, and listen to a podcast about the species on our Great White Shark section.
(via: Smithsonian Ocean Portal)
(image: © Courtesy of the Aquarium of the Pacific, Long Beach, California)