Our selection of top shark stories, highlighting the latest news and discoveries from around the world...

Celebrating 2nd International #AngelSharkDay

26 June

ICYMI…we celebrated the 2nd International #AngelSharkDay on Saturday 26 June! A day dedicated to showcasing this fascinating, but vulnerable family of sharks. Angel sharks are the 3rd most threatened family of sharks in the world. But progress is being made in angel shark conservation and research. Head over to the YouTube channel to find out what's being done to help conserve these amazing sharks. 

Research Continues on Critically Endangered Smalltooth Sawfish in Florida

25 June

Scientists are continuing their research on Smalltooth Sawfish in Southwest Florida. An important habitat for this Critically Endangered ray. Using acoustic tags, researchers will track individual sawfish movements over 4+ years. Results will help to find out if numbers are recovering, following steep declines due to destructive fishing. As well as identify mangrove habitat features important to young sawfish in the area.

Warming Temperatures Affecting Freeze Response in Developing Embryos

17 June

Research by the University of Manchester has discovered increased water temperature negatively affects the freeze response times of shark embryos developing in eggcases. Many animals stop moving when a predator is nearby to go unnoticed. Scientists found the freeze response times of Smallspotted Catshark embryos decreased 7-fold when water temperature increased by 5ºC.

It’s not known exactly how these findings will carry over to marine ecosystems. But slower response times could lead to increased predation rates on sharks and skates developing in eggcases and affect populations in the long term.  

Artificial Insemination Helps Create 97 Baby Sharks

15 June

It’s common knowledge, many shark populations are currently in a precarious position. To help support and sustain healthy populations, scientists have been trialling artificial insemination in Whitespotted Bamboo Sharks in aquariums. The project, which took over 4 years to complete and involved artificially inseminating sharks in 2 aquariums in America, helped to create 97 baby sharks.  

Mystery Skin Disease Affecting Malaysia's Reef Sharks

14 June

Whitetip Reef Sharks off Sabah, Borneo were seen with lesions and spots on their heads.  Other shark species off Sipidan Island are also showing similar signs of the disease. Marine biologists are uncertain what’s causing it. But a rise in sea temperature could be the culprit.

In Search of Deep-Sea Sharks

11 June

A week-long expedition off the Azores is aiming to shed light into the mysterious world of the Bluntnose Sixgill Shark. One of the largest predators of the deep-sea. Using a submersible to descend depths of 4,500 ft, sixgills were tagged with 2 different devices. Data will be collected on their vertical movements, location, speed, depth and surrounding temperature. Video recordings will also be taken. Findings will be compared with data collected from other scientists researching Bluntnose Sixgill Sharks around world to learn more about this species.

New 10-Year Strategy to Protect Sharks and Rays in 10 Hotspots

8 June

A 10 year strategy is being launched by the Wildlife Conservation Society. Helping to protect shark and rays in 10 shark hotspots around the world. Named 10x10 Shark Strategy, it’ll focus on overcoming gaps in conservation actions. Reducing overfishing and ensuring surviving shark populations are protected. Hotspots include Gabon, Mozambique, Bangladesh and Indonesia.

South Africa’s Dwindling White Shark Population

5 June

White Shark numbers are continuing to dwindle off South Africa’s Western Cape. With scientists noting a rapid decline in the last 5 years. A few years ago, researchers would expect to see up to 20 White Sharks a day. These days they say they’re lucky to see that many in a year. But where have they all gone and why?

The cause is still not clear. But as top predators, the disappearance of White Sharks has serious implications for the wider ecosystem.

Cape Cod’s White Shark Numbers Increase

4 June

Whilst researchers are questioning where South Africa’s White Sharks have gone. Those on the East Coast of the US are recording more than ever.

Scientists recorded 118 individual White Sharks off Cape Cod, Massachusetts in 2020, up from only 11 in 2013. Sharks fitted with transmitters are detected using under water acoustic receivers. A total of 231 White Sharks have been tagged since 2010. Data collected show shark activity is greater where seal numbers, one of their favoured prey, is highest.

Sharks Almost Went the Way of the Dinosaurs 19 million Years Ago

3 June

Scientists believe they’ve identified a previously unknown major ocean extinction event that happened ~19 million years ago. During which, shark diversity declined by over 70%, and shark numbers by over 90%.

These findings, published in Science were obtained from the presence of shark denticles found in sediment cores taken from the Pacific Ocean seafloor. The cause for this extinction event has not yet been determined.

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