Tagged protected species

Teens hook great white shark off of Ft Lauderdale

A great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) was hooked by a charter fishing boat about a mile and half off the Fort Lauderdale, Florida coast on Tuesday morning, according to a WPTV report. Five teenagers from the Tallahassee Community College baseball team had chartered the boat. While the crew realized that they had hooked something big, they initially thought it was a bull shark (Carcharhinus leucas). However, after the shark had been on the line for over an hour and a half, they realized it was actually a white shark.

Captain Taco Perez
told WPTV that the shark was on the line for “about two hours” before the crew “released the fish after taking a quick couple of photos.” Perez also told WPTV that they estimated the shark to be 13′(4m) in length with a weight of approximately 1,000lb (450kg).

The great white shark is a protected species in Florida waters.

Fisherman lands juvenile great white shark on SA beach

YouTube user APDharley1 posted the video above of a fisherman landing a juvenile great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) near Cape Agulhas, South Africa. According to the video description, the shark measured 170cm in length. The shark remains on the beach for about two minutes after having the hook removed, while measurements and photographs are taken. To the fisherman’s credit, he does make the effort to see that the shark is released back into the ocean.

White sharks are protected species in South Africa. Last month marked the first time in the history of South Africa’s courts that an individual was convicted of violating the protection legislation of the great white shark, when fisherman Leon Bekker was found guilty of having “caught, landed, and disturbed” the protected species.

The video description notes that the fisherman thought the shark was a mako.

California to review great white shark as endangered species

great white shark photo
California white sharks have endangered species protection during a one-year review period.

KABC-TV reports that the California Fish and Game Commission has voted unanimously to advance the candidacy of the great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) as a potential endangered species. The status review will last for one year and will grant the species the same protections as a listed endangered species during the review period.

It is already illegal to target and harvest white sharks in California. The candidacy status will also make incidental catch of the species illegal in state waters.

The commission vote followed a petition from Oceana to protect the subspecies of white sharks along the California coast. According to the KABC-TV report, state researchers hope to get a more accurate estimate of population numbers during the review and will assess threats to the species. The commission will use the information gathered from the review to make an “informed decision” on whether to list the species as endangered under California law.

The great white shark is currently listed as “vulnerable” globally on the IUCN Red List.

South African man found guilty of catching great white shark

A fisherman poses with a great white shark at Mossel Bay.(photo courtesy of Oceans Research)
A South African fisherman poses with a protected great white shark at Beacon Point, Mossel Bay.
(photo courtesy of Oceans Research)

According to a press release from the South African Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF), fisherman Leon Bekker has been found guilty of illegally catching and landing a great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) by the Mossel Bay Magistrate’s Court. Bekker was reporteddly sentenced to either a fine of R120,000 (approximately $13,500 or 10,000€) or twelve month prison sentence (suspended for five years).

Bekker was found guilty of having “caught, landed, and disturbed” the protected shark species in March of 2011. The verdict marks the first time in the history of South Africa’s courts that someone has been convicted of violating the protection legislation of the great white shark.

According to the press release, The DAFF “welcomes the verdict and stiff sentence” and hopes it will serve to deter others who might be contemplating catching or disturbing South Africa’s protected species.

In October of 2011, Bekker was identified by the Cape Times as the fisherman seen posing with a great white shark, which had been landed on the rocks at Beacon Point, Mossel Bay. Oceans Research issued a press release on the catch, which included photos taken by researchers Enrico Gennari and Ryan Johnson that documented the shark being caught and dragged onto the rocks. Bekker was also photographed posing with the shark after it was landed.

Kill order placed on great white shark in Western Australia

The first specific order to catch and kill a great white shark is making headlines in Western Australia. The order was made in response to multiple sightings of a white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) reported in the waters off of Dunsborough, WA over the past several days. The kill order is part of a new set of guidelines intended to reduce shark attacks in Western Australia. The policy introduced late last year, after a series of fatal shark attacks in 2011 and 2012. This is the first instance of an order to kill a specific shark (or sharks), since the guidelines were introduced.

WA Today reports that lines were initially set on Sunday with the intent of catching the great white shark (or sharks) seen in the Dunsborough area. A white shark was spotted as recently as yesterday afternoon in the area. According to the WA Today report, two tiger sharks (Galeocerdo cuvier) were caught as part of the effort. The tiger sharks, which measured 1.8m and 2m in length, were released according to Fisheries Department spokesperson Tony Cappelluti, who said the tiger sharks weren’t considered to be the “high hazard.” The lines were removed on Tuesday night, but Cappelutti went on to say that Fisheries Department officers would continue monitoring the area throughout the week to assess whether any further attempts to set lines will be made.

Great white sharks are a protected species in Australian waters.