Articles on Sharks

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When it comes to sharks, it’s important we know size and species. Scubaben/Flickr

Explainer: sharks — why size and species matter

Dozens of sharks have reportedly been caught since Western Australia’s “catch-and-kill” drum line program began two weeks ago. Firm numbers are not available given the WA government’s unwillingness to…
Sawfish are the most endangered members of the shark family. Flickr/Kaptain Kobold

Sharks and rays threatened worldwide – overfishing to blame

We have heard a lot of about sharks recently. In particular Western Australia’s plan to cull threatened white sharks has stirred up plenty of protest from the community, and a frenzy of media coverage…
Shark bites on humans are best viewed as random acts of nature rather than deliberate attacks. Mogens Trolle/www.shutterstock.com

Shark bite statistics can lie, and the result is bad policy

The mathematics of shark bites look pretty simple: the more incidents, the worse the situation. That said, no amount of scientific explanation can fully address the tragedy of people being injured or killed…
Great White Sharks will be one of the species targeted under Western Australia’s new shark plan. Flickr/Mshai

Western Australia’s shark culls lack bite (and science)

After a spate of fatal shark attacks over the past two years, Western Australia has released a radical new shark plan that will see large sharks removed and destroyed from designated “safe zones”. The…

Don’t turn your back on a shark

Sharks are able to detect which way a human is facing and prefer to approach people from behind according to a new study…
A combination of government policy and personal responsibility will keep us safer from sharks than culls will. AAP Image/Rebecca Le May

How to prevent shark attacks

In light of the most recent shark bite fatality in Western Australia (WA) last week, there have been renewed calls for a cull of large sharks to protect ocean users. Environment minister Greg Hunt has…
Former NBA player Yao Ming is pictured on a billboard in China, endorsing an anti-shark fin campaign. Mike Fabinyi

Shark fin drops off the menu, conservationists claim victory

In recent times, China has witnessed a series of campaigns aimed at persuading people to stop eating shark fin soup. So it is encouraging that, over the past year, shark fin consumption appears to have…
Right on cue with gaping jaw and rows of teeth. Loren Javier

It’s silly season, but there is a real shark threat to fear

Each summer, for several years in a row, a tabloid would send me a picture of a shark fin photographed off Cornwall and ask if it was a Great White. “No,” I would patiently explain, “it is a harmless basking…
A shark in the hand: this Northern River Shark has been tagged in the attempt to collect more information on the species. Jeff Whitty

Australian endangered species: Northern River Shark

The Northern River Shark (Glyphis garricki) is one of the rarest species of shark in the world. It is known only from a small number of locations in Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Papua…

Environmental factors affect sharks’ dive

The diving behaviour of sharks has been shown to be affected by the moon, water temperature and time of day. Research on…

Tracing patterns with great white sharks

Patterns in female great white shark migration patterns are becoming clearer, thanks to new research. California-based researchers…
The demand for shark fins has pushed threatened shark species from 15 in 1996 to 180 in 2010. Choo Yut Shing

Small win for big fish: convention moves to protect sharks

Each year around 100 million sharks are killed for their fins. The sharks are often pulled from the water, their fins are sliced off and they are thrown back in to drown. The industry is built on the high…
Pre-emptively emptying beaches when sharks are around can save lives, but there are other ways of preventing bites. Caroline Embrey

Shark bite prevention should be led by evidence, not politics

Things could not be harder for the beach-goers of Western Australia. Following the worst spate of shark-related fatalities ever recorded, it is summer once again. Shark sightings are up and there is always…
Shark fins are a delicacy in Asia, which can sometimes lead to unsustainable fishing practices. mario ruckh/Flickr

Shark protection developments have no bite

Whether it’s from fishing and by-catch, finning or even culling, global shark populations are under a growing threat from human activity. But how successful is international law at protecting some of the…

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