Hammerhead Sharks: Finning And Bycatch

Improved Essays
Sharks: Finning and Management
As the human population continues to increase, the demand for food also increases. An estimated 15 percent of consumed animal protein come from marine fish, and an overall 90 percent of the predatory fish, at the top of the food chain, are declining (Human, n.d). Hammerhead sharks, particularly scalloped hammerheads are the most threatened because of their fins and meat. The methods used for capturing this rare species are wasteful and cruel, and their decline is presenting tragic consequences for the ecosystem of the ocean (Shiffman, July 2014).
Finning, Overfishing, and Bycatch
Sharks are “apex” predators at the top of the ocean’s food chain. They keep the oceanic ecosystem balanced, which covers more than two-thirds
…show more content…
Finning is also a wasteful practice because “less than 10% of the shark’s body weight is used” (Shiffman, 2012b). Many finnng laws are in place because of these things, but as a result of this banning, there has been an increase in demand for shark meat (Kronin, 2015).
Finning can lead to overfishing, which is when more fish get killed than necessary, usually at a faster rate than they can reproduce. If the fisherman only want fins, they will be able to fit more fins in a boat than if they caught and placed whole fish in the boat (Shiffman,
…show more content…
They were the first shark species to be put on the U.S. Endangered Species List (Shiffman, July 2014). Because they are highly migratory, it is hard to protect them with U.S. laws alone.
Capture of Species These startling statistics may seem like reason alone to ban the capturing of hammerhead sharks, but not every country is equally concerned with the conservation of sharks and endangered species. Some species, such as the smooth dogfish sharks are even exempt from finning laws, as they have a tendency to drive away commercially caught fish, such as herring and mackerel. Dogfish also have a spine that can sting, causing an allergic reaction. Their meat is sold to countries such as England and Germany for fish and chips (McGuire, 2014).
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization International Plan of Action for the Conservation and management of sharks (IPOA) recommends that each nation should incorporate 10 principles which include making catches sustainable (not catching more than can be reproduced), reporting species of catch, making use of the whole dead shark, and being aware of threatened species (Shiffman, April

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    Fishermen harmfully reap the fins of sharks for money. This cruelty is only for one meal called shark fin soup. It is an old asian delicacy that is still around today. If shark finning continues and sharks are led to extinction, the ocean would not operate correctly causing the ecosystem to be put off balance. Shark finning is banned in some countries and it has improved their surrounding areas.…

    • 2517 Words
    • 11 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    This is done so the fins can be sold on the black market, fins are sold for about $650 per kilogram (about 2.2 lbs) so they are in high demand ("Shark Truth." Shark Fin Trade –.). The number of Shark fisheries has exploded, and there are signs that some Shark populations have declined dramatically. According to one estimate, by researchers at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, 100 million Sharks are now killed annually, on average, (Baum, Julia K., Ransom A. Myers, Daniel G. Kehler, Boris Worm, Shelton J. Harley, and Penny A. Doherty. Collapse and Conservation of Shark Populations in the Northwest Atlantic. )…

    • 1727 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Tuna Fish Case Study

    • 1008 Words
    • 5 Pages

    This is prompted by the belief that its value might be worth more than gold as we continue to hunt it out of existence. An online web organization, Overfishing.org, reports that over 25% of fish stocks are either overexploited or depleted, with only 1% recovering from depletion with the help of fish farming (another method which equally does both harm and good). From these dwindling levels of catch come another predicament – entire ecosystems are disappearing along with the fish populations. Destructive fishing techniques like bottom trawling, dynamiting, and poisoning destroy habitats near shore as well as in the deep sea. This loss of aquatic habitats removes crucial organisms’ homes that may have provided that area with a means of stability and reproduction, as well as acted as prey for larger animals.…

    • 1008 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Shark finning had brought the fishing industry multimillion worth to attract numerous fishermen (NBC News). The reason that fishermen are so into shark finning is because the shark fin is profitable than most fish species, and it is unnecessary to carry the rest of shark’s body as it would consume the space on the vessel; they often throw the rest of its body into the ocean after removing the fins (Finning And The Fin Trade). The injured shark will die from suffocation, blood loss or become other species’ prey (Finning And The Fin Trade). Thus, as more the decreased amount in shark will break the food chain as its lower divisions to grow either in unstoppable pace or losing other species. To illustrate “A number of scientific studies demonstrate that depletion of sharks results in the loss of commercially important fish and shellfish species down the food chain, including key fisheries such as tuna, that maintain the health of coral reefs” (Shark’ Role In The Ocean).…

    • 1486 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    That is unless you are prepared and know that if the shark feels threatened this endangered species might attack you. Yes, in case you didn’t know some shark species are very endangered. So we have to instead of hunting and killing them protect them. They have been on this earth 200 million years before the dinosaurs.The sharks that have caused the most deaths are (in order)Great white shark, Oceanic whitetip shark, Tiger shark and Bull shark. There is a dispute about who has killed more when it comes to first place this is because the Oceanic whitetip shark could have killed more unrecorded castaways but the great whites have the most announced deaths.…

    • 757 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Essay On Shark Finning

    • 1005 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Many people never realize that what they do has ripple effects in the world. A prime example of this is shark finning. Many of the world’s shark populations are being decimated by the fishing industry, but what people do not take into consideration is the role sharks play in their environment. Not to mention that the way the sharks are being treated during the process is extremely barbaric. Therefore, shark finning should be illegal because it is cruel and inhumane, it has negative effects on the ecosystem, and the sharks that are targeted the most by the trade are in grave danger of extinction.…

    • 1005 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Once the essential shark population came back there would be a decline in tuna, meaning businesses would lose profit on these commercially caught fish. There are 80 nation that longline for tuna annually (FAO). These nations would face a somewhat dramatic lose to their economy as tuna has become a major export and essential to their governments GDP. Though, once the tuna population falls the primary consumers that the tuna feed on would start to increase which would return balance to the ecosystem. Yes, the banning of shark finning would lead to some economical issues for some countries, but they were making their profit off of murdering sharks for their fins which cannot be justified.…

    • 1399 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Coral Reef Changes

    • 1234 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Using cyanide as a particular example, is especially bad due to how poisonous it is. Fishermen commonly use this poison to stun the fish they want, but also kill the surrounding fish and corals (Threat to Coral Reefs: Trade in Coral Organisms). When the corals die, it takes a very long time for them to come back, usually around 10,000 years to fully grow back. Corals only grow about 0.5 to 2.0 cm per year ( Coral Reefs). There needs to be a set of laws that are enforced by all the world’s countries to effectively protect coral reef…

    • 1234 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    People are the main reason that sharks are becoming endangered. One of the many reasons for the decrease in population is the increase of deep sea fishing. Many sharks get caught by fishermen who are trying to catch other deep sea fish, such as tuna and swordfish. In the 1950’s, sharks were about…

    • 613 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    It is the Japanese fishermen who take advantage of this weakness of dolphins to drive them to the cove where inhumane massacre occurs using harpoons. 6.2 MERCURY POISONING There is a concern of public health in Japan who can easily become innocent victims of mercury poisoning. As mentioned before, dolphin meat carries high levels of toxins such as mercury, methyl mercury and cadmium. Dolphin meat is not a popular category of meat in Japan. Dolphin meat is often disguised as whale meat and many whale meat products are replaced with dolphin meat products.…

    • 1194 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays