Conservationists look to final plenary to cement positive yet tentative decisions
Bangkok, 11 March 2013. In a highly anticipated Committee vote today, proposals to list under CITES* five species of sharks were supported by more than the two-thirds majority of voting countries needed for adoption. Conservationists are pleased yet mindful that decisions must still be confirmed in the final plenary session later this week.
Last Thursday, 7th March at a reception dedicated to sharks at the Retro Café, Bangkok, Project AWARE welcomed CITES country delegations and turned over more than 135,000 shark petition signatures from scuba divers and shark supporters in more than 228 countries, territories and areas of special interest.
Thailand signals opposition to CITES listings while Senegal proclaims support
Debate is heating up on proposed protections for sharks and rays at a major global trade meeting. Shark conservation experts have united to urge governments to vote in favour of the measures and thereby ensure the survival of the threatened species. Roughly 150 of the 178 governments that are party to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) are expected to vote on these proposals over the coming days.
Increased trade protection for polar bears and sharks are on the agenda of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) next week in Bangkok, officials said Thursday.
"We expect proposals on polar bears, sharks and manta rays will go to a vote," convention secretary general John Scanlon said.
The CITES meeting, which is to begin Sunday and run through to March 14, is drawing more than 2,000 delegates from 177 countries.
Overfishing threatens the magnificent and prized ‘Ali Maduwa’, writes Malaka Rodrigo.
A giant “maduwa”, or manta ray, was netted last week by fisherman in Welipatanwila, Ambalanthota, on the South coast. The ocean creature was pregnant and weighed 1,500 kilograms. A week earlier, another manta ray was caught by fishermen in Akkaraipattu, on the East coast. Both sea creatures have been identified as Giant Oceanic Manta Rays, the largest member of the ray family.
The United States said Friday it would support proposals to curb the trade of five shark species and manta rays, whose numbers are declining because of demand for fins and gills.
"For several decades, we have been increasingly concerned about the over harvest of sharks and manta rays," US Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe said in a meeting at the United Nations, according to a statement.
It’s that time of year when many of us take stock. What happened in 2012? How can we make the New Year the best that it can be? Project AWARE is hitting the ground running in 2013 and we’re committed to ensuring progress for sharks and rays under CITES this March. You can help push for these protections: Sign the petition today!