Porbeagle sharks get Appendix II listing
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) delegates in Doha, Qatar, on Tuesday voted to give only one out of four shark species an Appendix II listing.
Porbeagle sharks passed by a 86-to-42 vote. The species is prized for its meat and fins. The Appendix II listing requires exporting countries to ensure that international trade is legal and will not harm the species’ survival.
However, scalloped hammerhead sharks, ocean whitetip sharks and spiny dogfish failed to garner enough votes to receive Appendix II or Appendix I listings.
“Sharks have been on our planet for more than 400 million years,” said Matt Rand, Pew Environment Group’s director of global shark conservation. “But if governments do not act, many shark species will not last — even iconic species like the hammerheads. Most species reproduce late in life, have few young and simply do not have the capacity to recover from commercial overfishing and global trade.
“The shark fin trade, which is responsible for the killing of up to 73 million sharks each year, remains largely unregulated,” he added. “Today’s votes only help porbeagle populations. Even with scientific data showing that many shark populations are plummeting, international fisheries management bodies and now international conservation forums mostly favor commerce of protection. Individual nations need to answer the call to protect threatened spices if sharks are to remain in our oceans.”