Lemon Shark in black and white


Tiger shark
Tiger shark

Shark and ray populations in Northwestern Atlantic are recovering

The shark and ray population in the north Atlantic are in recovery, according to a recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal.

Lead author Nathan Pacoureau, postdoctoral research fellow at Simon Fraser University (SFU), and his team came to this conclusion after analyzing trends in fishing pressure, fisheries management and population status for wide-ranging coastal sharks and rays in the western Atlantic Ocean. 

White shark at Guadalupe
White shark at Guadalupe. Are they now going to be poached?

Closure of Guadalupe Island for divers cause of great concern for the sharks

This action expands on the 2022 closure of the Guadalupe Island Biosphere Reserve by the National Commission of Natural Protected Areas (CONANP), the federal agency tasked with managing Mexico’s protected natural areas.

They also closed the island to cage diving in 2021 and the pandemic closed down operations in 2020.

Nurse shark
Nurse shark

Some sharks return to the same sites to breed for decades

Scientists with the New England Aquarium found that nurse sharks, Ginglymostoma cirratum, returned to the waters off the Dry Tortugas, 70 miles (113km) from Key West, to mate for up to 28 years. The Dry Tortugas has been known as a courtship and mating site for nurse sharks since 1895.

A 30-year (1992–2021) study documented long-term site fidelity to this area, with data from 137 adult sharks.

Sixgill and Sevengill — Ancient Sharks in the Kelp

It certainly looks “prehistoric”—whatever that means. Cigar-shaped, blunt-snouted, with that slightly “sock-puppet-looking” smirk, the overall look of this big beastie is very much that of an ancestral shark, like some of the deep-water dogfishes, the sleeper sharks and others. Indeed, fossil remains similar to modern sevengills and sixgills are known from the Jurassic and perhaps much earlier.

Great White Shark  Photo:  Elias Levy
Great White Shark

Great white shark swims more than 10,000km in 150 days

Researchers from the New South Wales (NSW) Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and Deakin University fitted an adult male shark with a pop-up satellite tag and tracked it for more than five months.

After being tagged, the shark swam more than 20km out to sea, then headed north to Queensland. 

It roamed between 80 and 280km offshore between Agnes Water and the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef, before heading to the cooler waters in southern NSW, Victoria and Tasmania. 

Shark fins still attached to their rightful owners

President Biden signs the Shark Fin Sales Elimination Act

The Shark Fin Sales Elimination Act represents a multiyear effort by lawmakers, under pressure from animal-rights and ecological organizations such as the Animal Welfare Institute and Oceana, to ban the trade of shark fins. 

Seventeen states and three U.S. territories have banned or restricted the intrastate sale of shark fins, but instituting a federal framework is critical as fins imported and sold in the U.S. can come from endangered or threatened shark species, or from sharks that were finned.

Hooked shark
Bycatch is a term used to refer to any species caught accidentally while fishing for other species. According to the FAO, there are few fisheries that don't catch sharks as bycatch, and some fisheries actually catch more sharks than their targeted species.

Small device can reduce shark bycatch by 90%

Marine scientists have invented a small device that can reduce shark bycatch numbers by emitting short electrical pulses as a deterrent.

When clipped on the fishing line next to a baited hook, the battery-operated SharkGuard works by emitting a short localised pulse every two seconds. This causes the shark’s ampullae of Lorenzini (electrical sensors around its nose and mouth) to be overstimulated, thus prompting it to swim away.

Tiger beach, Bahamas
Tiger beach, Bahamas. Are sharks getting bigger because of tourists or is it the bigger sharks which are interacting with tourists?

Tiger sharks that interact with tourists are larger, study shows

That feeding or attracting wildlife with food to enable better viewing opportunities by ecotourists (i.e. provisioning tourism) has the potential to alter the natural behaviour and physiology of animals has long been well established.

But how the physiological state of wildlife might be related to the nature and magnitude of these effects remains poorly understood.

More than half of surfers surveyed are not bothered by sharks in the water.
More than half of surfers surveyed are not bothered by sharks in the water.

Shark in the waters? No sweat, said more than half of surfers in survey

Imagine you are riding the waters on your trusty surfboard, savouring the rush of emotions and feeling totally alive, when you glance down into the waters and you spot a shark swimming by. 

Does your heart skip a beat and you immediately look for the fastest way to get back to dry land?

Or do you continue what you are doing, feeling more at one with the elements?

Well, if you are like more than 50 percent of surfers, you would simply continue surfing, according to a survey of 391 surfers, conducted by the University of South Australia.