The Action Plan for Australian Sharks and Rays 2021: poster
This A3 poster presents a visual summary of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List Categories applied to Australia's 328 species of sharks, rays and chimaeras by The Action Plan for Australian Sharks and Rays 2021. The assessments show that sharks and their relatives are faring better in Australia than in the rest of the world, with a relatively low level of threatened species. People who manage and conserve sharks can see which species most urgently need attention, and have a benchmark for measuring future changes in their status.
Half a century of global decline in oceanic sharks and rays
Overfshing is the primary cause of marine defaunation, yet declines in and increasing extinction risks of individual species are difcult to measure, particularly for the largest predators found in the high seas. Here we calculate two well-established indicators to track progress towards Aichi Biodiversity Targets and Sustainable Development Goals: the Living Planet Index (a measure of changes in abundance aggregated from 57 abundance time-series datasets for 18 oceanic shark and ray species) and the Red List Index (a measure of change in extinction risk calculated for all 31 oceanic species of sharks and rays). We fnd that, since 1970, the global abundance of oceanic sharks and rays has declined by 71% owing to an 18-fold increase in relative fshing pressure. This depletion has increased the global extinction risk to the point at which three-quarters of the species comprising this functionally important assemblage are threatened with extinction. Strict prohibitions and precautionary science-based catch limits are urgently needed to avert population collapse, avoid the disruption of ecological functions and promote species recovery.
The Action Plan for Australian Sharks and Rays 2021
The Action Plan for Australian Sharks and Rays 2021 is the first action plan for Australia’s chondrichthyan fishes (sharks, rays, and chimaeras). This book presents a comprehensive and consistent review of the extinction risk of all 328 species occurring in Australian waters, including Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic waters. It provides a benchmark from which changes in population and extinction risk can be measured, and to help guide management for their conservation. This Action Plan also serves to raise the profile of the diversity and conservation needs of Australia’s sharks, rays, and chimaeras. The majority of the fauna is secure, although roughly one in eight species is threatened with extinction. The Action Plan presents specific actions required to address vast knowledge gaps, and outlines conservation objectives for each species. It will help the Commonwealth and the states and territories prioritise species for conservation listing, research, and management. This book is a call to action to secure all of Australia’s sharks, rays, and chimaeras.