Endangered Hammerheads Swim from Protection
Brian Stallard - Nature World News
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November 27, 2014

A new study of specific hammerhead migration routes has found that these sharks are often swimming straight into unprotected waters - a worrying fact that experts are using to help argue for more protective zones to close the gaps.

Hammerheads have been seeing drastic declines in numbers in recent years, where some of these shark populations have dropped by up-to a stunning 90 percent.

"In Mexico in the eighties, the sea of Cortes was one of the best places to see these beautiful and majestic animals but at present it's hard to see even a few," researcher Mauricio Hoyos from Pelagios Kakunjá said in a statement. "The key to protecting this species is detecting their nursery grounds and protecting them in their more vulnerable stages."

To detect when these sharks are most threatened, Hoyos and his colleague recently captured and tagged tree juvenile hammerhead sharks in the hopes of tracking their development and migration patterns. The sharks were tracked for more than 10 months, with data from one female shark revealing a stunning 3,350 km journey from the Gulf of California.

"This is the first time ever that we have an idea of the behavior of this life stage in this zone and this information will be important to design management plans to protect this species in Mexico," Hoyos said.

...The tagging results are detailed in full in the journal Animal Biotelemetry.

Read the rest at Nature World News

Photo: Flickr/stolethetv

Shark tagging program in the Gulf of California in order to know the movements and behavior of juvenile hammerhead sharks. (Mauricio Hoyos)

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