The issue

Nominated for listing by HSI in 2019, the whitefin swellshark is found only in Australia and is listed Critically Endangered, due to commercial fishing threats.

For over 420 million years, sharks and rays have roamed our oceans, maintaining balance in ever-changing marine ecosystems.

Australia is home to 322 species of sharks and rays, with 51% of these unique to our waters.

However this biodiversity hotspot of sharks and rays is under attack from a number of sources.

Australia’s east coast shark culling programs are outdated, ineffective and disastrous for marine animals.

Bycatch from fishery trawlers, shark netting, culling, as well as  baited drum lines are drastically threatening shark and ray numbers. As well as other marine species including dolphins, whales, turtles and more.

Our solution

We propose an end to lethal shark control programs, and an end to unsustainable shark fishing.

These programs can be replaced by modern beach-safety measures such as surveillance drones, personal shark deterrents, technology-driven alert systems and education programs.

We are also advocating for better management to prevent the unsustainable exploitation and bycatch of sharks and rays in fishery activity.

In 2019, we were successful in a legal challenge against the operation of lethal drumlines in the Great Barrier Reef — read the full story.

Since 2018 HSI’s shark conservation work in Australia has been supported by the Shark Conservation Fund in a partnership with the Australian Marine Conservation Society.

What can you do?

Sign the petition to help bring an end to the use of outdated shark control methods on the Australian east coast.

Make smarter seafood choices, such as avoiding buying shark (flake) and choosing sustainable alternatives.

View our fact sheet and share with your family and friends. 

Become a Shark Champion, and help us protect Australia’s sharks and rays.

Sign our action here to tell NSW and QLD to stop shark culling

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