Salvador Jorgensen, a researcher at Stanford Universitys Hopkins Marine Station, has teamed with his colleagues in the Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) program to tag nearly 150 great whites found near the coast of central California. In the winter, these sharks leave the seal rookeries where they feed all summer, and set off for warmer waters near one of two tropical hotspots. One site between Hawaii and Mexico attracts so many of these giants, it has become known as the white shark caf.
We started calling it the caf because that is where you might go to have a snack or maybe just to see and be seen. We are not sure which. Jorgensen says. Once they leave the caf, they return year after year to the same exact spot along the coast, just as you might return to a favorite fishing hole.
Klimley, Jorgensen, and their colleagues continue to map out the migration routes and gathering sites of highly mobile sharks, including some of the most threatened species. As this information becomes available, it can direct conservation efforts by helping fisheries managers to focus on protecting these sites.
"Our oceans are being emptied of sharks, and the scale of the problem is global," says Julia Baum, a marine ecologist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Baum, a member of the World Conservation Union (IUCN) Shark Specialist Group recently participated with other shark experts in a workshop to evaluate the threatened status of oceanic sharks. They identified eleven open-ocean shark and ray species that now qualify for the IUCN's Red List of Threatened Species, which includes species listed as Critically Endangered, Endangered, and Vulnerable.
Baum points out that no single conservation strategy can work for all shark species. For those that spend much of their lives on the high seas, Baum cites a recent United Nations General Assembly Fisheries Resolution that r
|Contact: Matthew Wright|