Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Law that regulates shark fishery is too liberal, experts say

Date:
March 2, 2012
Source:
University of British Columbia
Summary:
Shark fins are worth more than other parts of the shark and are often removed from the body, which gets thrown back into the sea. To curtail this wasteful practice, many countries allow the fins to be landed detached from shark bodies, as long as their weight does not exceed five per cent of the total shark catch. New research shows that this kind of legislation is too liberal.

Fins labeled primary are most commonly harvested, while fins labeled secondary are only sometimes harvested; the three common fin cuts leave varying levels of meat attached to the fin.
Credit: Biery, L. and Pauly, D. (2012) A global review of species-specific shark fin to body weight ratios and relevant legislation. Journal of Fish Biology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1095-8649.2011.03215.x

Shark fins are worth more than other parts of the shark and are often removed from the body, which gets thrown back into the sea. To curtail this wasteful practice, many countries allow the fins to be landed detached from shark bodies, as long as their weight does not exceed five per cent of the total shark catch. New University of British Columbia research shows that this kind of legislation is too liberal.

A study published this week in the journal Fish Biology analyzes the fin to body weight ratios for 50 different shark species. The authors find the average fin to body mass is three per cent -- considerably lower than the five per cent ratio currently legislated by the EU and other countries.

"The five percent ratio provides an opportunity to harvest extra fins from more sharks without retaining 100 per cent of the corresponding shark carcasses," says Sea Around Us Project researcher Leah Biery, lead author of the study. "It does not prevent waste or overfishing, as the law intended."

Currently, the EU and eight other countries use at least a five per cent shark fin to body weight ratio for landed catch. Only 59 countries in the world have any legislation related to sharks.

"Sharks are sensitive to overfishing and it's embarrassing how little we have done to protect them," says Daniel Pauly, principal investigator of UBC's Sea Around Us Project and co-author of the study. "We would like to see more science in the management and protection of sharks in the coming years."

Researchers estimate about 26 to 73 million sharks are killed each year to feed the growing demand for shark fin. Sharks are sensitive to overfishing because they often grow slowly, mature later, and have very few offspring.

Canada MP Fin Donnelly introduced a bill last December that would ban the import of shark fin into Canada, but it has not been voted on. The Canadian municipalities of Brantford, Mississauga, Oakville, Pickering, London and Toronto have all banned the sale and possession of shark fin.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of British Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. L. Biery, D. Pauly. A global review of species-specific shark-fin-to-body-mass ratios and relevant legislation. Journal of Fish Biology, 2012; DOI: 10.1111/j.1095-8649.2011.03215.x

Cite This Page:

University of British Columbia. "Law that regulates shark fishery is too liberal, experts say." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 March 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120302132548.htm>.
University of British Columbia. (2012, March 2). Law that regulates shark fishery is too liberal, experts say. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120302132548.htm
University of British Columbia. "Law that regulates shark fishery is too liberal, experts say." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120302132548.htm (accessed October 2, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Attacking Superbugs

Attacking Superbugs

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — Two weapons hospitals can use to attack superbugs. Scientists in Ireland created a new gel resistant to superbugs, and a robot that can disinfect a room in minutes. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cultural Learning In Wild Chimps Observed For The First Time

Cultural Learning In Wild Chimps Observed For The First Time

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) — Cultural transmission — the passing of knowledge from one animal to another — has been caught on camera with chimps teaching other chimps. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) — A new study published by the World Wide Fund for Nature found that more than half of the world's wildlife population has declined since 1970. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Annual Dog Surfing Competition Draws California Crowds

Annual Dog Surfing Competition Draws California Crowds

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) — The best canine surfers gathered for Huntington Beach's annual dog surfing competition, "Surf City, Surf Dog." Duration: 01:15 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins