HSI and AMCS to host Shark Conservation Summit

By : Humane Society International February 15, 2019

Humane Society International (HSI) and the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) are hosting a national shark summit next week as a part of the launch of a new multi-year conservation campaign called Shark Champions.

What: Shark Conservation Summit

Where: The Refectory, Sydney University

When: February 21-22, 2019

The summit will feature leading scientists and researchers, conservation groups, government representatives and business stakeholders to address the challenges and opportunities for shark conservation in Australia. Bios for all speakers can be viewed here.

Full Shark Conservation Summit agenda:

 Thursday February 21st


9:30 – 9:45


Welcome and introduction from Humane Society International and Australian Marine Conservation Society – Erica Martin (CEO HSI) and Darren Kindleysides (CEO AMCS)


9:45 - 10:30



Key Note: Australia as a global shark and ray biodiversity hotspot

Presentation: Prof Colin Simpfendorfer – James Cook University

This session will describe Australia's outstanding shark diversity including our endemic species. We will investigate the conservation status of all sharks and rays in Australia and the major threats to their populations.


11:00 – 12:30


How well are we recovering Australia's threatened shark species?

Through presentations and panel discussions, these sessions will explore the effectiveness of recovery and management measures to facilitate population recovery of listed threatened species and make recommendations for further action.

Dr Matt Heard (Orarius Ecology) – Overview

Dr Nick Otway (NSW DPI) – Grey Nurse Shark

Dr Rich Hillary (CSIRO) - Great White Shark


1:30 – 3:00


How well are we recovering Australia's threatened shark species?

Dr Barbara Wueringer (Sharks and Rays Australia) - Sawfish

Dr Toby Patterson (CSIRO) - Speartooth/Northern River Sharks

Assoc Prof Jeremy Lyle (University of Tasmania) - Maugean Skate


Thursday Night


6:00 – 7:30


Sharks and the Media – What's the Real Story?

An evening event exploring social attitudes towards sharks – and the role the media plays. Hosted by Wendy Harmer – ABC Broadcaster

Allison Langdon (60 Minutes)

Dr Christopher Pepin - Neff (University of Sydney)

Dr Blake Chapman (Australian Geographic and author)


Friday February 22nd


9:30 – 10:00


How does Australian state and federal legislation for conserving and managing sharks compare to global best practice?

Presentation: Humane Society International in collaboration with the Environmental Defenders Office NSW

This presentation will examine legislation for shark conservation worldwide – where Australia is benchmarked against best practice and make recommendations for audience discussion.

10:00 - 10:30

From pariahs to iconic species: the rapid growth of the shark conservation movement and what the future holds

Nicola Beynon - Humane Society International

This presentation will provide an update on the international community's multi-lateral efforts to protect sharks through the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and the Convention for the Conservation of Migratory Species (CMS).


11:00 – 12:00


Status of Australian species not protected under Australian legislation

Dr Matt Heard (Orarius Ecology) – current nominations

Dr Michelle Heupel (James Cook University) – Shark Action Plan Update


12:00 – 12:30


What is the Source of our Shark Products?

Assoc Prof Adam Stow – Macquarie University

1:30 – 2:00

Bridging the Gap – Exploring how NGOs and scientists can work together - Understanding the perspectives of conservationists and academics to help develop powerful synergies that can best drive positive conservation outcomes for sharks and rays.

Tooni Mahto and Dr Leonardo Guida – Australian Marine Conservation Society


2:00 – 3:30


A review of latest non-lethal alternatives in shark control

Presentations and panel discussion from:

Assoc Prof Charlie Huveneers – Flinders University

Lindsay Lyon – Ocean Guardian

Dr Vic Peddemors – NSW DPI

Sen Peter Whish-Wilson - Chair of the Senate Inquiry into Shark Control

This session will provide an update and opportunity for discussion on the latest in non-lethal shark control measures and recommendations for audience discussion.

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About HSI Australia

HSI concentrates on the preservation of endangered animals and ecosystems and works to ensure quality of life for all animals, both domestic and wild. HSI is the largest animal protection not-for-profit organisation in the world and has been established in Australia since 1994