Guy Harvey Magazine

WIN 2012

Guy Harvey Magazine is focused on fishing, boating, scuba diving, and marine conservation. Portfolios from the world's best fishing photographers, articles on gear, travel, tournaments, apparel, lifestyle, seafood recipes, sustainable fisheries.

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Page 54 of 83

More than 400 species of sharks swim in our oceans, with an evolutionary history that can be traced to before the age of the dinosaurs. A United Nations study found that fin imports to Hong Kong and Taiwan alone rose 214 percent from 1985 to 1999. Up to 73 million sharks are killed every year, primarily to support the global shark fin industry, valued for the Asian delicacy of shark fin soup. Jacques Cousteau), scientist and artist Guy Harvey, and Sherman's Lagoon cartoonist Jim Toomey to support shark protections. The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation strongly supported the initiative and Dr. Guy Harvey met personally with Bahamian government officials to help educate them on this important issue. For anglers and conservationists concerned about billfish as well as tunas and sea turtles, this is great news. Pressure from the Chinese government and their fishing interests to open shark-fishing operations posed the greatest of threats to the long- standing ban on longlining gear in the Bahamas EEZ. Longlining is the leading cause of decline among billfish species, not to mention a major issue for endangered and threatened sea turtles. Chile Chile's Chamber of Deputies and Senate resoundingly passed a bill this past summer to ban shark finning and it was signed into law by Chile's president in August. It leaves Venezuela alone among Latin American nations in not restricting the practice. The Chilean legislation requires that all sharks be taken whole and brought to port intact, essentially making fishing for the shark fin trade unprofitable, since the carcasses take up too much room in the holds of commercial fishing vessels. Honduras President Porfirio Lobo Sosa signed a permanent moratorium on commercial fishing for sharks at a June event hosted by the Pew Environment Group on the island of Roatan, the country's top diving destination. The law is the fulfillment of a joint declaration that Honduras announced last year with Palau. The measure protects sharks across 92,665 square miles of Honduras' exclusive economic zone, which encompasses both its Pacific and Caribbean coasts. Maldives The Maldives created a shark sanctuary in March 2010, covering 35,000 square miles of the Indian Ocean, or roughly the size of Portugal. In doing so, it became the second nation to establish blanket protection for sharks, including a total ban on shark product exports. Palau Thanks to years of work by island activists and more recent engagement by the Pew Global Shark Conservation Campaign, Palau President Johnson Toribiong created the world's first shark sanctuary, an area the size of France—237,000 square miles—in September 2009. United States and Territories The Shark Conservation Act of 2010 prohibits any boat from carrying shark fins without the corresponding number and weight of carcasses, and all sharks must be brought to port with their fins attached. Hawaii, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the Marshall Islands all prohibited the possession, sale, or distribution of shark fins. California is moving forward with a similar ban. Oregon has passed restrictive laws. In November, Florida protected tiger sharks and three species of hammerhead sharks. The state protected lemon sharks from harvest in 2010. Check for more shark updates. SHARK CONSERVATION BY THE NUMBERS

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