Update

30
Jun
2021

Mako Sharks face continued pressure – particularly from the EU fleets. While ICCAT Parties are stepping up to voice their support for a prohibition on retention of North Atlantic mako – the EU continues to promote fishing, in spite of the scientific advice to the contrary. But the call to ban mako shark retention is increasing across EU Member States!

Continue reading Voices For Makos

18
Jun
2021

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The PADI AWARE Foundation — with support from Shark Advocates International (a project of The Ocean Foundation), Shark Trust, Ecology Action Centre, Defenders of Wildlife, Humane Society International, Sciaena, and Shark Project — appreciates this opportunity to express our views on proposals for addressing the depletion of one of the Atlantic’s most imperiled fish species: the shortfin mako shark.

Continue reading ICCAT 2021 Joint Statement in response to Parties’ proposals

25
May
2021

Shark Trust –with support from The Ocean Foundation, Shark Advocates International (a project of The Ocean Foundation), Ecology Action Centre, Project AWARE, Humane Society International, Shark Project, and Defenders of Wildlife –appreciates this opportunity to express our views regarding our top priority for the 2021 ICCAT Panel 4 intersessional meeting: shortfin mako shark protection.

Continue reading ICCAT 2021 Panel 4 Intersessional Opening Correspondence on Mako Sharks

19
Feb
2021

The Shark Trust, in concert with its Shark League partners, appreciates the opportunity to offer a final consolidated statement regarding our top ICCAT priority: science-based limits for shortfin mako sharks.


We reiterate our deep disappointment over the lack of consensus on urgently needed mako protections. ICCAT scientists have warned about makos’ inherent vulnerability for more than a decade. This year marks four years since they firstrecommended, inter alia, a South Atlantic 2001t TAC and a North Atlantic retention ban. Repeated failure to heed this advice jeopardizes an exceptionally valuable and vulnerable shark species, exacerbating risk for population collapses that are irreparable in our lifetimes. To recap:

We oppose landing allowances for the depleted North Atlantic population because they:
▪ Run counter to SCRS advice for a non-retention policy “without exception”
▪ Create incentive for irresponsible fishing practices that cause stress and ensure mortality
▪ Further delay a multidecadal recovery.
The SCRS has been clear and comprehensive in advising a North Atlantic ban. This measure:
▪ Is based on TAC scenarios that incorporate all sources of mortality, including dead discards
▪ Is deemed the most effective way to achieve the substantial reductions necessary
▪ Takes into account the species’ relatively high post-release surviva

Retention bans are not novel or overly burdensome. Such measures:
▪ Are vital to remove incentives to encounter and kill valuable, threatened species
▪ Were recommended for shark species of concern more than a decade ago
▪ Are the most common RFMO shark measure, mandated by ICCAT for many other species
▪ Have been implemented by several ICCAT Parties for many shark species
▪ Are less restrictive than closing fisheries.

More must be done. We support additional measures to minimize incidental mako mortality. Such actions are recommended to boost recovery but cannot replace the core elements of the SCRS advice.

Harmonization is increasingly warranted as Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) obligations are implemented. We welcome North Atlantic mako bans by Canada, Portugal, and Spain, as well as opinions by EU and UK CITES expert panels that find against continued North Atlantic mako trade, including high seas landings. Ensuring complementary, science-based mako safeguards across fisheries and environment authorities at domestic and international levels is not only the best path for saving makos but can also set an overdue example for conservation of many other shark and ray species

Between now and July, unilateral actions and collective prioritization are needed to minimize further damage and enable an effective intersessional agreement. We urge Parties to:
▪ Implement domestic science-based mako measures
▪ Encourage other Parties to follow suit, and
▪ Prepare to propose, promote, and agree the mako measures advised by the SCRS.

13
Dec
2020

The Shark Trust – with support from Ecology Action Centre, Project AWARE, Shark League, The Ocean Foundation, Defenders of Wildlife, Human Society International, and Sciaena – is exceptionally disappointed that Parties have once again delayed urgently needed measures to reverse declines in Endangered shortfin mako populations, despite prioritizing this issue as the only potential shark conservation action of the 2020 virtual negotiations. This latest failure represents blatant disregard for SCRS advice at the expense of one of the ocean’s most valuable and vulnerable shark species. We regret that we must amplify previous warnings about inaction exacerbating risk for stock collapses that are irreparable in our lifetimes.

Continue reading ICCAT 2020 Joint NGO Closing Statement – Plenary