With the final adoption of proposals to regulate the trade of requiem sharks and hammerheads as governments conclude the 19th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES CoP19), the following statement was issued by Luke Warwick, Director of the Wildlife Conservation Society Shark and Ray Program:
Research led by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the Instituto Oceanográfico de Moçambique (InOM), using baited remote underwater video (BRUV) surveys to assess sharks and rays off southern Mozambique, has recently recorded a tagged young white shark matched to an earlier record of the same individual in a BRUV survey off Struisbaai, in South Africa, in May 2022.
“This remarkable commitment is a major step toward sustainably managed seas which is so critical to nature, people and climate.” Simon Cripps, Executive Director of the WCS Marine Program
The Protecting Our Planet Challenge will invest at least $1 billion USD to support the creation, expansion and management of marine protected areas and Indigenous and locally governed marine and coastal areas by 2030.
A conservation coalition consisting of WCS, WWF, Elasmo Project, and James Cook University have launched the Shark and Ray Recovery Initiative (SARRI) as a global response to bring sharks and rays back from the brink.
The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) launched a new, visual identification tool to enable trade inspectors and customs officials to quickly identify and seize illegally obtained or traded shark products.
Gabon's network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) provides a blueprint that could be used in many other countries, experts say.
Cuba has just declared Este del Archipiélago de Los Colorados (“East of Los Colorados Archipelago”), a new marine protected area. This new MPA covers about half of one of the four major archipelagos surrounding the country, and hosts exceptional marine life including Antillean manatees, American crocodiles, and critically endangered Hawksbill sea turtles.
In a win-win for commercial fisheries and marine wildlife, researchers have found that using lighted nets greatly reduced accidental bycatch of sharks, rays, sea turtles, and unwanted finfish.
Ratifying its global commitments, the Government of Colombia has recently declared Isla Ají a new marine protected area (MPA). Spanning 24,600 ha (95 square miles), this important and beautiful nature reserve will serve to protect threatened wildlife and safeguard the wellbeing of local coastal communities who depend on the area for food and their livelihoods.
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