Sunday, 18 May 2014

Scientists Focusing on the Wrong Sharks in the Wrong Places (Op-Ed)

By Paolo Momigliano and Rob Harcourt | May 16, 2014 01:51am ET

This article was originally published at The Conversation. The publication contributed the article to Live Science's Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

Sharks are in danger in most parts of the world, with a quarter of all sharks and rays now threatened with extinction. This ongoing collapse of shark populations has already had far-reaching effects on marine ecosystems. To arrest this trend we desperately need scientific data that effectively inform conservation management. But are we focusing our research effort in the right areas?

We looked at 20 years' worth of scientific papers on shark conservation to see if shark science is meeting the needs of conservation. Our results, included in a forthcoming book, suggest that the species most in need, and the places where most damage is done, aren’t getting the attention they deserve.

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