Shark conservation

Why save sharks?

Kristy Hillas diving with sharks in Oahu, Hawaii

Kristy Hillas diving with sharks in Oahu, Hawaii

One common questions people ask is "why should we humans care about sharks?" and there are two main reasons why.

Firstly, being apex predators sharks play a vital role in the marine ecosystem by maintaining the species below them in the foot chain and also by serving as an indicator of overall ocean health. Therefore, sharks keep the ocean in balance, helping to remove the weak and sick as well as keeping the balance with competitors. This helps to ensure marine biodiversity.

Secondly, we should care because humans are responsible for the decline in shark populations. Sharks have been around for 450 million years, however, in the past 50 years shark populations have declines by 90% due to human activities. Overfishing, by catch, and shark finning, shark nets and culls, humans kill one million sharks annually. For this reason alone human should not only care about sharks, we should be responsible for restoring their populations.

 
Kristy Hillas at a shark fishing market in Lombok, Indonesia for Project Hiu in 2018

Kristy Hillas at a shark fishing market in Lombok, Indonesia for Project Hiu in 2018

What can you do to help save sharks?

  • Avoid shark meat (aka flake)

  • Avoid consuming commercial seafood

  • Avoid shark products (found in cosmetics (squalene), shark cartilage (pet food), shark skin/teeth, fish oil, krill oil)

  • Avoid restaurants that sell shark fin soup

  • Follow shark safety in the ocean (download your Surfing With Sharks Guide here)

  • Question what you hear in the media about sharks

  • Spread the word about shark conservation

 
[Sharks] are the apex predators, and nature doesn’t make animals like this for no reason. They are essential in our oceans. In previous years, the decimation of shark population has caused the surrounding ecosystem to collapse, they are truly the ‘boss’ of our oceans.
— Madison Stewart

Some shark documentaries that are a must watch…

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