In a post on the Facebook page of AfriOceans Conservation Alliance, photos of hundreds of sharks that have been gutted with their fins and heads removed and then dumped on a local beach on the False Bay coastline have been posted
This is one of the egregious examples that is occurring worldwide due to the shark finning industry. Finning is one of the greatest threats to sharks due to the demand that fins have for shark fin soup. In fact, fins from as many as 73 million sharks end up in the global shark fin trade ever year. This leads to the act of shark finning, cutting the fins off a shark and discarding its body at sea, where it could drown, bleed to death, or be eaten alive by other fish.
In the post on the Facebook page, the group states, ‘Hundreds of soup fin sharks, gutted with their fins and heads removed have been dumped on a local beach on the False bay coastline. We have been fighting for the protection of sharks in our waters for years and very few took the decline in shark numbers as being an issue. False Bay is being cleaned out by fishermen fishing for exactly these sharks. This is not the work of Chinese trawlers off shore but more likely done by local fishermen who are going after the fins and have no market for the meat. With the unsustainable removal of smaller sharks like these, it reduces and removes a vital food source for our White sharks. Everything exists in a delicate balance and we are witnessing the early stages of catastrophic collapse of key coastal ecosystems. AfriOceans calls on the authorities to investigate this urgently and makes its findings public.’
The United States Senate is currently in the process of working to advance a bill to ban the U.S. shark fin trade and now awaits votes on the Senate floor. The Shark Fin Sales Elimination Act (H.R. 737) was introduced by Reps. Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan (I-M.P.) and Michael McCaul (R-Texas), and currently has an amazing 284 total bipartisan cosponsors in the House of Representatives. Companion legislation (S. 877), which was introduced by Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.V.).
Some shark populations have declined by more than 90% in recent decades due to overfishing; and one-third of identified shark species in the Hong Kong fin trade, the historic center of the global trade, are threatened with extinction.
To help public support in passing the bill currently going through Congress in the US, please head over to Oceana’s shark fin ban petition on their website here or copy and paste the following link into your browser: https://act.oceana.org/page/6748/action/1?ea.tracking.id=vanity