100,000,000 Deaths In 365 Days
India is among the biggest exporters of shark fins in the world. It’s a subject that needs to get a lot more attention; sharks need to be protected from not just poachers but the threat of reckless fishing. The number stands at a hundred million deaths in a year worldwide. Just how high does it need to be before we take notice?
There are more than 400 species of shark in the world, of which only four to five are actually responsible for attacks on humans. In contrast to the massive decimation of the shark population by man, there are a 100 shark attacks worldwide per year, of which only 20 to 30 are fatal.
Long-line fishing is very dangerous for sharks.This is a fishing technique that is used by commercial liners. A main line is dropped into the water with hundreds or thousands of hooks or baits attached to just one line. With this sort of fishing, lots of other marine life gets killed incidentally as a bycatch. This method is rampant and can finish sharks in a decade.
Shark finning, long line fishing, bycatch, overfishing and shark nets around beaches that protect swimmers are some of the threats sharks face. Shark finning is a massive industry. Finning involves cutting off the shark’s fin and throwing the rest of the fish back into the water. Sharks cannot survive for too long without their fins; they usually sink to the bottom of the ocean and die either from suffocation or as prey to other predators. Finning is banned in some countries, requiring fishermen to bring back the shark to port before slicing its fin off.
A 100 million sharks are killed every year, and now they are on the verge of extinction.
Sharks have been in the ocean for 400 million years, evolving as a top predator. Sharks maintain a balance in the marine ecosystem by managing the food chain, weeding out the weak beings and contending with competitors. They are a good indicator of an ocean’s health. Without them, the entire marine ecosystem would collapse.