Why They Matter
Shark populations around the world are in rapid decline. Sharks grow relatively slowly, take many years to mature and produce relatively few young. These characteristics make sharks, like this porbeagle, particularly vulnerable to over-exploitation.
This vulnerability is exacerbated by the large and growing demand for shark fins and the general lack of management of shark fishing. Populations simply cannot replenish at the same rate as they are caught and finned to meet market demand.
Sharks play a very important role in marine areas, sitting at the top of the food chain, and help maintain the delicate balance of marine life.