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How You Can Help Oceanic Whitetip Sharks


NOAA National Marine Fisheries is Considering Rule Changes to the ESA to Increase Protection for the Oceanic Whitetip Shark

Oceanic whitetip sharks are among the most threatened of all large sharks in the global ocean.

Targeted for their fins and meat, overfishing by commercial fisheries poses the most significant threat to the oceanic whitetip shark. Although protected in most US fisheries, these sharks are injured and killed when accidentally caught as bycatch ijn tuna and swordfish fisheries. 

In 2019, the IUCN estimated the population had decreased by more than 98% globally, leading it to designate the species as endangered.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries has proposed a rule that would give whitetip sharks additional protections under the Endangered Species Act.

As important as these protections are they are, unfortunately, not enough. Right now, NMFS is seeking comment on a proposed rule to give the oceanic whitetip shark additional protections under the ESA. The comment period runs through July 15 so add your voice and send a letter to NOAA’s Assistant Administrator supporting this proposal to save these sharks!! Paste and copy the email below.

Dear Assistant Administer Coit,

I support the proposed 4(d) rule to protect the threatened oceanic whitetip shark under the endangered species act. These sharks are among the most threatened by the shark fin trade and as bycatch, and are critically endangered.

The proposed 4(d) rule is necessary and advisable for the conservation (i.e., survival and recovery) of the oceanic whitetip shark. It will grant the species vital legal protections against take and trade and give law enforcement additional tools to stamp out the illegal shark fin trade in the United States.

Please urge NOAA- National Marine fisheries to finalize the proposed 4(d) rule under the ESA and take all necessary to ensure the recovery of the oceanic whitetip shark.