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COVID-19 has changed the world as we know it, including how we communicate, meet and make decisions, yet despite this fishing – and overfishing – continues and so must make efforts to protect shortfin mako sharks and other threatened species.

The International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) won’t be meeting in person this year, but decisions can – and must – still be made. Ahead of ICCAT parties embarking on their 2020 deliberations, the Shark League with our partners brought together supporters with scientists, conservationists and officials in two key regions to update on progress and plan for the next months when ICCAT has another chance to follow the science and prohibit mako catch in the North Atlantic.

Continue reading Making Time for Makos with Partners and Supporters Around the World


The United States has been a major obstacle to securing urgently needed protections for Endangered shortfin mako sharks. Scientists associated with the International Commission for Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) have documented serious overfishing and depletion of the North Atlantic population, in particular, and have been advising a regional ban on retention since 2017.

In 2019, 16 ICCAT Parties supported heeding this advice, but opposition from the U.S. (and EU) prevented consensus, leaving the declining population woefully underprotected for another year. In anticipation of upcoming virtual ICCAT 2020 negotiations, a diverse array of 18 NGOs have united to urge the U.S. government to change course and help turn the tide for this exceptional species. Read the joint letter here.

Continue reading Eighteen NGOs call on U.S. government to change course and support international protection for Endangered mako sharks


Major seafood companies have joined an appeal to ICCAT delegations to protect shortfin mako sharks, heeding scientists’ warnings about depletion in the North Atlantic and imminent risk in the South.

The letter signed by over eighty supermarket chains, tuna buyers, and NGOs sets out urgent issues for the tuna Regional Fisheries Management Organisations in 2020, highlighting mako sharks as the priority for ICCAT. While acknowledging the impacts of COVID-19 on the decision-making process, signatories believe progress can and must be made on such pressing concerns.

Read more on the NGO Tuna Forum website.