A new law making its way through the South Carolina General Assembly aims at restricting tiger shark fishing to catch-and-release only.
Albert Kok via Wikimedia Commons
“For all intents and purposes the animal is not edible,” conservation lobbyist Charles Farmer informs local newspaper on the Post and Courier. “There is a highly limited (consumer) demand for these animals. The demand on protecting the species greatly outweighs that. No industry should be involved in taking out vulnerable species.”
According to Farmer, “none of the science” indicates that regional tiger shark populations are healthy. In an effort to better understand the animals, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources recently began working with OCEARCH on a shark tagging initiative.
Sponsored by Rep. Chip Limehouse, the bill recently flew through the House of Representatives. It will face the state Senate in 2016.
The tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) is currently assessed as Near Threatened by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. In the United States, the tiger shark is fished primarily for its fins and liver oil. The fish have low reproduction rates, amplifying the effects of overfishing.
Source: discovery.com, Post and Courier
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