17 Oct 2014

SPC calls for a ban on shark lines in oceania

10:12 am on 17 October 2014

The Secretariat of the Pacific Community is calling on Pacific countries to ban the use of shark lines in the region.

A new study has revealed that endangered sharks previously thought to be the victims of by catch are actually being specifically targeted by long line fishing vessels operating in the equatorial pacific.

A senior Fisheries Scientist in the SPC, Joel Rice, says shark stock assessments show populations of targeted species such as the silky shark and the oceanic white tip are critically low.

"One of the things that we noted is that shark lines catch a great deal of sharks and that if we as a Pacific community and if the pacific community decide that what they want to do is reduce that shark catch, then an effective way to do that would be to discontinue the use of shark lines."

SPC Fisheries Scientist, Joel Rice.