World Bulletin/News Desk
Protection measures have failed to stop around 100 million sharks being fished every year and a third of all shark species are now threatened with extinction, conservationists say.
Many are caught for their fins, a delicacy in Asian soup. The fins are sliced off and the animals are often dumped alive overboard to die of suffocation or eaten by other predators.
Protection for endangered sharks may have lagged because they are relatively unloved compared to animals such as pandas or lions, even though they usually kill fewer than 10 people a year worldwide.
An estimated 97 million sharks, or 1.41 million tonnes, were caught in 2010 compared to 100 million in 2000, according to a study in the journal Marine Policy, the first to estimate the number of sharks killed annually.
A meeting of 170 nations in Bangkok from March 3 to 14 will consider limits on trade in hammerhead sharks, oceanic whitetip sharks and porbeagle sharks to curb over-fishing. Great white sharks, whale sharks and basking sharks already have protection.
Demand in Asia for shark fins, a delicacy in soup, is a main driver of catches that also target meat, liver oil and cartilage.
China plans to phase out shark fin soup in official banquets. But it may be a sign that sharks are getting harder to find because there are fewer in the oceans, Boris Worm, a marine biologist at Dalhousie University in Canada, told Reuters.
Sharks killed seven people worldwide in unprovoked attacks in 2012, down from 13 in 2011 but above the average for 2001 to 2010 of 4.4, according to the International Shark Attack File compiled by the University of Florida.
Friday's study estimated that between 6.4 and 7.9 percent of the world's sharks are caught every year, depleting numbers since sharks grow slowly, have few offspring and numbers can only rebound at about 4.9 percent a year.
A third of shark species risk being wiped out, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
Beijing Automotive Group Co (BAIC) chairman Xu Heyi said over the weekend the company will phase out sales of conventional cars in Beijing by 2020 and nationwide by 2025, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
Shazam, which identifies songs from short excerpts, likely to be rolled into Apple’s mobile device software
Turkish defense minister in London says 'there will be no delay'
Local tech start-ups in Gaza Strip must work around Israeli blockade; open borders could boost their opportunities
Activists and tech leaders including Tesla's Elon Musk have called on the UN to ban fully-automated weapons systems that could revolutionise warfare while putting civilians at heightened risk.
Tweet capacity doubled in almost all supported languages
AkinSoft company starts mass production of human-robots named 'Ada GH5'
Tapanuli Orangutan is latest discovery of great ape species since nearly a century
Muhammed Ahmed Faris, first Syrian cosmonaut, been living in Turkey for last 5 years
Apple's newest device, set to go on sale November 3, is designed to be unlocked with a facial scan with a number of privacy safeguards -- as the data will only be stored on the phone and not in any databases.
Although third quarter results showed ongoing losses and a dip in revenue, the upbeat outlook sparked a pre-market gain of 10.8 percent for Twitter.
Search engine shows Asik Veysel playing baglama
2-day congress and fair will host thousands of delegates, high level bureaucrats and CEOs in Ankara Congresium Center
Spy can easily track activities with $1,000 mobile advertising purchase
The project, which was first announced more than two-and-a-half years ago, would be the biggest private investment in western Ireland.