Troubled waters: Threats and extinction risk of the sharks, rays and chimaeras of the Arabian Sea and adjacent waters

Rima W. Jabado, Peter M. Kyne, Riley A. Pollom, David A. Ebert, Colin A. Simpfendorfer, Gina M. Ralph, Shaikha S. Al Dhaheri, K. V. Akhilesh, Khadeeja Ali, Mohamud Hassan Ali, Tariq M.S. Al Mamari, K. K. Bineesh, Igbal S. El Hassan, Daniel Fernando, Edwin M. Grandcourt, Muhammad Moazzam Khan, Alec B.M. Moore, Fereidoon Owfi, David P. Robinson, Evgeny RomanovAna Lucia Soares, Julia L.Y. Spaet, Dawit Tesfamichael, Tooraj Valinassab, Nicholas K. Dulvy

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The extinction risk of sharks, rays and chimaeras is higher than that for most other vertebrates due to low intrinsic population growth rates of many species and the fishing intensity they face. The Arabian Sea and adjacent waters border some of the most important chondrichthyan fishing and trading nations globally, yet there has been no previous attempt to assess the conservation status of species occurring here. Using IUCN Red List of Threatened Species Categories and Criteria and their guidelines for application at the regional level, we present the first assessment of extinction risk for 153 species of sharks, rays and chimaeras. Results indicate that this region, home to 15% of described chondrichthyans including 30 endemic species, has some of the most threatened chondrichthyan populations in the world. Seventy-eight species (50.9%) were assessed as threatened (Critically Endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable), and 27 species (17.6%) as Near Threatened. Twenty-nine species (19%) were Data Deficient with insufficient information to assess their status. Chondrichthyan populations have significantly declined due to largely uncontrolled and unregulated fisheries combined with habitat degradation. Further, there is limited political will and national and regional capacities to assess, manage, conserve or rebuild stocks. Outside the few deepsea locations that are lightly exploited, the prognosis for the recovery of most species is poor in the near-absence of management. Concerted national and regional management measures are urgently needed to ensure extinctions are avoided, the sustainability of more productive species is secured, and to avoid the continued thinning of the regional food security portfolio.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1043-1062
    Number of pages20
    JournalFish and Fisheries
    Volume19
    Issue number6
    Early online date15 Aug 2018
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2018

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  • Cite this

    Jabado, R. W., Kyne, P. M., Pollom, R. A., Ebert, D. A., Simpfendorfer, C. A., Ralph, G. M., Al Dhaheri, S. S., Akhilesh, K. V., Ali, K., Ali, M. H., Al Mamari, T. M. S., Bineesh, K. K., El Hassan, I. S., Fernando, D., Grandcourt, E. M., Khan, M. M., Moore, A. B. M., Owfi, F., Robinson, D. P., ... Dulvy, N. K. (2018). Troubled waters: Threats and extinction risk of the sharks, rays and chimaeras of the Arabian Sea and adjacent waters. Fish and Fisheries, 19(6), 1043-1062. https://doi.org/10.1111/faf.12311