1m Atlantic sharks killed yearly
PARIS - AT LEAST 1.3 million sharks, many listed as endangered, were harvested from the Atlantic in 2008 by industrial-scale fisheries unhampered by catch or size limits, according to a tally released on Monday.
The actual figure may be several fold higher due to under-reporting, said the study, released by advocacy group Oceana on the sidelines of a meeting of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).
Convening in Paris through November 27, the 48-member ICCAT is charged with ensuring that commercial fisheries are sustainable. It has the authority to set catch quotas and restrictions.
While the global spotlight has been trained on the plight of Atlantic bluefin tuna, many species of high-value sharks are in even more dire straits, say marine biologists.
'Sharks are virtually unmanaged at the international level,' said Elizabeth Griffin Wilson of Oceana. 'ICCAT has a responsibility to protect our oceans' top predators.' Under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, 'highly migratory' sharks must be managed by international bodies.
Of the 21 species found in the Atlantic, three-quarters are classified as threatened with extinction. -- AFPhttp://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/TechandScience/Story/STIStory_606039.html