Last night at 6pm down here on Little Cayman in the middle of the Caribbean I conducted my talk about sharks - why they are so amazing and the threats they are facing. The most recent scientific paper (Worm et al .2013) has given estimates of shark mortality not only from commercial fishing but through bycatch, illegal unreported fishing, and shark finning. There conservative estimate was that 100 million sharks are killed per year - that's around 11,500 sharks per hour! For 48% of the shark species they investigated the level of annual mortality was well above the sharks estimated rebound rate. In other words sharks are currently being fished at a rate that they can't recover from.
My talk concluded with a statement about the need for global shark protection, highlighting methods such as developing shark sanctuaries, sustainable shark fishery regulations, increasing finning bans and tougher enforcement, taxes on shark import and export to provide for properly regulated domestic shark management, research and education.
Then it was time…
On the 1st of June I vowed that if I could raise $500 US for Project AWAREs shark protection project by my 29th birthday (9th of July) I would shave off all my hair in a stand against shark finning.
So my time was up and I kept my promise… The best bit is I smashed my target with total donations sitting at not $1000, not $2000, not $5,000 but $8,231 (www.finathon.org/shave4sharks)!
I love my new look, and I want to thank everyone who donated to the project you are all AWESOME.
Thank you from the sharks!
Stay tuned for the video of the shave.
All photo credits thanks to Emma Camp. Thank you also to Stafford for shaving my head and my awesome shark - I love it. Thank you to Southern Cross Club (www.southerncrossclub.com) for hosting the big shave.