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September 24, 2014

India Urged to Support Shark and Ray Protections

Humane Society International/India, Defenders of Wildlife, Shark Advocates International, Project AWARE Foundation

  • John Stublar/istock

Animal protection groups are urging the Indian Ministry of Environment and Forests to support the shark and ray listings being proposed at the 11th meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention of Migratory Species. In a letter to the Ministry, Humane Society International/India strongly advocated for India’s support for the listing of sawfishes, hammerhead sharks, thresher sharks, silky sharks, mobula rays and reef manta rays under CMS. HSI joins Defenders of Wildlife, Shark Advocates International and Project AWARE Foundation in calling on the Ministry to adopt the proposals that will be discussed at the November conference in Quito, Ecuador.

N.G. Jayasimha, managing director, HSI/India, said “As a long standing member of the Convention of Migratory Species, India’s support would greatly strengthen the proposals for the listing of these threatened species and shall bolster the conservation measures being undertaken by all CMS member nations internationally.”

“Following India’s support on the shark and manta ray listings proposed at the 13th meeting of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, we are hopeful that the country shall continue its support at CMS CoP11 as well. Given the willingness to collaborate with regional bodies on shark and ray conservation, we are confident that India is fast on its way to becoming a leader in the conservation of these highly migratory species”, said Jayasimha.

HSI/India was a co-organizer for the ‘Capacity Building Workshop on Implementation of CITES Appendix II listings of Sharks and Manta Ray Species’ that was held in Chennai on 26-28 August 2014.

According to CMS, migratory sharks are highly vulnerable to overexploitation as they grow slowly, mature late and produce very few offspring. As a result of the rapid and largely unregulated increase in target fisheries and by-catch, many populations have been depleted with a high risk of extinction for some species.

Media Contact: C. Samyukta, csamyukta@hsi.org

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