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Predators in danger: shark conservation and management in Australia, New Zealand and their neighbours

Momigliano, P., Jaiteh, V.F., Speed, C., Maclean, N. and Holwell, G.I. (2014) Predators in danger: shark conservation and management in Australia, New Zealand and their neighbours. In: Stow, A., Maclean, N. and Holwell, G.I., (eds.) Austral Ark: The State of Wildlife in Australia and New Zealand. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, pp. 467-491.

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In this chapter we examine the biodiversity and the status of conservation and management of shark species in Australasia and Indonesia. Almost 17% of shark species in the region are listed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as threatened, and approximately 40% are of conservation concern, their future being dependent on the implementation of appropriate management strategies. Overfishing is a major threat to sharks, as their life-history strategies make them susceptible to even modest levels of fishing mortality. In Australia and New Zealand many shark stocks experienced dramatic declines as a consequence of overfishing; however, in the past few decades substantial improvements in the management of shark fisheries have taken place. On the other hand, shark fishing in Indonesia is largely unreported and unregulated and fishing by Indonesian vessels is likely to have consequences that go beyond the depletion of local populations, affecting shark populations in neighbouring countries such as Australia. We illustrate examples of over fishing in the region, discuss the potential effects of habitat degradation and climate change in the future and examine current management frameworks for the conservation of shark species in the region with an emphasis on the implementation of Nation Plans of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks (NPoAs).

Publication Type: Book Chapter
Murdoch Affiliation: Asia Research Centre
Centre for Fish and Fisheries Research
School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Copyright: © Cambridge University Press 2015.
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