Banning is not enough: The complexities of oceanic shark management by tuna regional fisheries management organizations

Type Article
Date 2015-07
Language English
Author(s) Travassos Tolotti Mariana1, 2, Filmalter John David1, 3, 4, Bach PascalORCID1, Travassos Paulo5, Seret Bernard1, 6, Dagorn Laurent1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ Montpellier, CNRS, IFREMER, UMR MARBEC,IRD, Ave Jean Monnet CS 30171, F-34203 Sete, France.
2 : Univ Fed Pernambuco, Dept Oceanog, Recife, PE, Brazil.
3 : South African Inst Aquat Biodivers, Grahamstown, South Africa.
4 : Rhodes Univ, Dept Ichthyol & Fisheries Sci, Grahamstown, South Africa.
5 : Univ Fed Rural Pernambuco, Dept Pesca & Aquicultura, Recife, PE, Brazil.
6 : Museum Natl Hist Nat, Dept Systemat & Evolut, Paris, France.
Source Global Ecology And Conservation (2351-9894) (Elsevier Science Bv), 2015-07 , Vol. 4 , P. 1-7
DOI 10.1016/j.gecco.2015.05.003
WOS© Times Cited 29
Keyword(s) Bycatch, Conservation, Fin trade, Pelagic shark, Tuna fisheries

Recently, declining populations of several pelagic shark species have led to global conservation concerns surrounding this group. As a result, a series of species-specific banning measures have been implemented by Regional Fishery Management Organizations (RFMOs) in charge of tuna fisheries, which include retention bans, finning bans and trading bans. There are both positive and negative aspects to most management measures, but generally, the positive aspects outweigh the negatives, ensuring the measure is beneficial to the resource and its users in the long term. Banning measures are a good first step towards the conservation of pelagic shark species, especially since they improve conservation awareness among fishers, managers and the public. Measures that impose total bans, however, can lead to negative impacts that may jeopardize the populations they were intended to protect. The majority of pelagic shark catches are incidental and most sharks die before they reach the vessel or after they are released. The legislation set out by RFMOs only prevents retention but not the actual capture or the mortality that may occur as a result. Managers should be fully aware that the development and implementation of mitigation measures are critical for a more effective conservation strategy.

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Travassos Tolotti Mariana, Filmalter John David, Bach Pascal, Travassos Paulo, Seret Bernard, Dagorn Laurent (2015). Banning is not enough: The complexities of oceanic shark management by tuna regional fisheries management organizations. Global Ecology And Conservation, 4, 1-7. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :