Several shark species are facing extinction. Here’s how you can help

by | Jul 1, 2024 | Science

Older than dinosaurs and trees, sharks have endured a lot throughout their 450 million years on Earth. They’ve even survived five mass extinctions, including the asteroid that wiped out 75% of life on the planet. But many species of these aquatic apex predators are now in danger of dying out forever.“Sharks are in crisis globally,” says the WWF. Overfishing (hunting for their meat, fins, and other parts before they can reproduce fast enough) is their biggest threat along with unintentionally getting caught in fishing gear and the effects of climate change.Of the thousand known species of sharks and rays (sharks’ closest living relatives), over a third of them are at risk of extinction. And since sharks are “indicators of ocean health,” as sharks go, so does the delicate balance of marine ecosystems.Shark researchFrom gathering data to educating the public to advocating for underwater life, many conservation groups are on a mission to protect these prehistoric creatures before they are lost to history.Research is key to conservation. Scientists rely on this information to inform wildlife and habitat management and conservation plans while advocates use data to develop and recommend policy to public officials. This research can also be used for public safety purposes as well as to educate future generations that will inherit the planet.Often conducted in remote and dangerous environments, shark research requires time and money. But that work is paying off as researchers continually identify new species of sharks, such as those that can walk on the ocean floor and glow in the dark.These research-oriented organizations are exploring the world’s reefs, seas, coastlines, and oceans to ultimately benefit shark conservation:Atlantic White Shark Conservancy – Based on the southern tip of Cape Cod, the conservancy’s main mission is white shark research and education. Offering expeditions to see the animals in their natural habitat, educational Shark Centers open to the public, and youth science programs, the non-profit also runs the Sharktivity app where user-reported shark sightings help researchers learn more about shark travel and behavior and keep sharks and humans safe from each other.Beneath the Waves — Since 2013, Beneath The Waves has used science and technology to promote ocean health and conservation policy. Their threatened species initiative collects research on sharks using tools such as tags, sensors, drones, and satellites to better understand shark biology and movement. The non-profit launched the first long-term study of large-scale shark san …

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[mwai_chat context=”Let’s have a discussion about this article:nnOlder than dinosaurs and trees, sharks have endured a lot throughout their 450 million years on Earth. They’ve even survived five mass extinctions, including the asteroid that wiped out 75% of life on the planet. But many species of these aquatic apex predators are now in danger of dying out forever.“Sharks are in crisis globally,” says the WWF. Overfishing (hunting for their meat, fins, and other parts before they can reproduce fast enough) is their biggest threat along with unintentionally getting caught in fishing gear and the effects of climate change.Of the thousand known species of sharks and rays (sharks’ closest living relatives), over a third of them are at risk of extinction. And since sharks are “indicators of ocean health,” as sharks go, so does the delicate balance of marine ecosystems.Shark researchFrom gathering data to educating the public to advocating for underwater life, many conservation groups are on a mission to protect these prehistoric creatures before they are lost to history.Research is key to conservation. Scientists rely on this information to inform wildlife and habitat management and conservation plans while advocates use data to develop and recommend policy to public officials. This research can also be used for public safety purposes as well as to educate future generations that will inherit the planet.Often conducted in remote and dangerous environments, shark research requires time and money. But that work is paying off as researchers continually identify new species of sharks, such as those that can walk on the ocean floor and glow in the dark.These research-oriented organizations are exploring the world’s reefs, seas, coastlines, and oceans to ultimately benefit shark conservation:Atlantic White Shark Conservancy – Based on the southern tip of Cape Cod, the conservancy’s main mission is white shark research and education. Offering expeditions to see the animals in their natural habitat, educational Shark Centers open to the public, and youth science programs, the non-profit also runs the Sharktivity app where user-reported shark sightings help researchers learn more about shark travel and behavior and keep sharks and humans safe from each other.Beneath the Waves — Since 2013, Beneath The Waves has used science and technology to promote ocean health and conservation policy. Their threatened species initiative collects research on sharks using tools such as tags, sensors, drones, and satellites to better understand shark biology and movement. The non-profit launched the first long-term study of large-scale shark san …nnDiscussion:nn” ai_name=”RocketNews AI: ” start_sentence=”Can I tell you more about this article?” text_input_placeholder=”Type ‘Yes'”]
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