Dusky Sharks: Whale Killers

ecology, Natural Science, sharksMay 17, 2015 • 1~2 min read

It’s generally thought that baleen whales are too large to be successfully attacked by most marine predators.  Orcas are typically considered the only real predatory threat to large whales, and even they have to use teamwork to take down a young whale.  Large sharks, which also sit near the top of the marine food web, […]

Ocean Things to Be Thankful For: Megalodon is Dead, but We Still Have Sharks (and Whales)

A Renewed Sense of Wonder, Conservation, Environmentalism, evolutionNovember 26, 2014 • < 1 min read

This time of year, it’s appropriate to think of things to be thankful for.  This being an ocean-focused blog, I’d like to share something ocean-related that I’m thankful for, and hopefully spread a little Ocean Optimism in the process.  What I’m thankful for is that Carcharocles megalodon is extinct.  This may not seem like cause […]

Fin-Body Ratios for Smooth Dogfish – Depends on How You Slice It

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, sharks, Sustainability, Underrepresented Issues in Marine Science and ConservationAugust 8, 2014 • 1~2 min read

The 2010 Shark Conservation Act prohibits removal of fins at sea for all sharks landed in U.S. Waters, with a glaring exception for smooth dogfish, or smoothhound sharks.  In an effort to ensure that fishermen aren’t performing the cruel practice of throwing a still-living but finless shark overboard, a fin:body ratio of 12% for smooth […]

Changes Proposed for U.S. Fisheries Management: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, policy, SustainabilityFebruary 9, 2014 • 2~2 min read

This past Tuesday, the draft bill to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Act was released by the U.S. House.  The Magnuson-Stevens Act is a big deal because this is the law that lays out how fisheries management works in the United States.  This time, a number of changes have been proposed by Representative Doc Hastings, some of […]

Shark Regulation Updates

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, sharksAugust 13, 2013 • < 1 min read

While Shark Week was raging along, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) approved a new round of shark fishery regulations for public comment.  Quite a bit has happened since the last time we covered U.S. shark fisheries here, so it’s time for a bit of a recap before discussing how the latest developments affect […]

Largest U.S. Shark Fishery: Coming to a School Lunch Near You?

Conservation, fisheries, Focus on Nuance, sharks, SustainabilityJuly 2, 2013 • 2~2 min read

Spiny dogfish sharks have had a complicated history when it comes to fisheries management, going from hated pest to crashed fishery to conservation concern and now one of two certified-sustainable shark fisheries ever (the other is the Pacific species of spiny dogfish).  The story didn’t end with being certified sustainable though, and recently this fishery […]

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