New Caledonia (New Caledonia (French: Nouvelle-Calédonie) a special collectivity of France located in the southwest Pacific Ocean) is to join other Countries in the region to outlaw Shark fishing and the adrenalin sport of Shark feeding.
The move comes amidst worldwide data that indicates Shark populations have been decimated by up to 90 per cent over the last century. This mass extinction is said to be throwing marine biodiversity into a state of disarray.
As we as a species decimate the top predators of the ocean, we inadvertently upset the balance of the entire planet.
The government of New Caledonia says it has decided to ban fishing of sharks, which are being decimated to feed growing demand for luxury goods.
‘New Caledonia took the decision to ban the fishing, capture, detention or commercialisation of all species of sharks’ in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ) — an area roughly the size of South Africa, authorities in the French territory said.
According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), humans kill about 100 million sharks each year, mostly for their fins, which are used for expensive, luxury soups in China.
Conservationists warn that dozens of species are under threat. Over the past 100 years, 90 per cent of the world’s sharks have disappeared, mostly because of overfishing, the FAO says.
Shark-fin soup was once a luxury enjoyed just by China’s elite, but as the country’s 1.3 billion people have grown wealthier and incorporated it into their festivities, shark populations have been increasingly decimated.
The government of New Caledonia also banned so-called ‘shark-feeding’, a popular adrenalin-fuelled tourist activity that consists in giving food to the animals to observe them from a close vantage point.
The territory joins other countries in the region to have created shark sanctuaries, including French Polynesia, Palau and Cook Islands.
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