The Thailand eShark Project is well underway as we reach the half way point for this season of eShark surveying! Below is an updated account of shark and no-shark sightings from divers all over Thailand between 01 November 2013 and 29 February 2014:
Total number of records submitted from Thailand : 1975
Total number of surveys with sharks present is: 224
Total number of surveys with rays present is: 270
Total number of surveys with turtles present is: 196
Total number of surveys with seahorses present is: 98
Total number of surveys with whale present is: 17
Total number of surveys with seals present is: 0
Total number of surveys with jellyfish present is: 221
Total number of surveys with garbage present is: NA
What is eShark?
eShark provides a simple way for divers and snorkelers to report the sharks, rays and sawfish they see, and don’t see (zero’s are just as important!), in a way that is used to assess and monitor populations, communities and ecosystems. Most importantly these data are used to assess the need for, and success of marine management initiatives, including sanctuaries.
What will the Thailand eShark Project results be used for?
The Thailand eShark Project results will be used to raise awareness of declining shark populations in Thailand to the general public, Thai government and the Department of Marine Coastal Resources (DMCR) of Thailand. Additionally, to help improve protected marine parks with the aim of creating shark sanctuaries. The identification of shark species and areas is also an important step in determining the best method for recovery and protection.
Who can help and contribute to the Thailand eShark Project?
ANYONE that has ever dived or snorkeled in the ocean! All ocean going divers (professionals, recreational, and tourists) are candidates for this survey. The on-line surveys should be filled out after each dive you make – even if you do not see any sharks!
The Thailand eShark Project aims to evaluate how shark and ray populations have changed through time in Thai waters. eShark uses scuba diver’s observations to census shark populations around the world. Scuba divers possess valuable information because they census areas that fishers don’t- like coral reefs, seagrass beds, and pinnacles. Divers are also extremely valuable for monitoring no-take zones and Marine Protected Areas- where fishing is prohibited.