issues and experts

Shark sanctuaries not panacea

January 04, 2013
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A letter written by an SFU student and published in the December issue of the journal Science urges legislators, the public and politicians to do a reality check on shark sanctuaries. Lindsay Davidson, a master’s student in marine biology, says they don’t adequately protect dwindling shark populations because of loopholes and exceptions. “Similar to advertising, it’s important to read the fine print,” adds Davidson. “While often billed in the press as triumphs in shark conservation legislation, many shark sanctuaries allow small scale fishing, including of threatened species, and often all far short of covering all national waters.” Davidson can explain how positive press coverage of shark sanctuaries may discourage more effective, science-based management measures, such as imposing fishing limits, protecting critical habitat protection and reducing bycatch.

Lindsay Davidson, 604.356.4144, ldavidso@sfu.ca

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