Add to that the fact that the species is biologically extinct in the Gulf of Mexico, action must be taken to further protect the oceanic whitetip.
NMFS, announces the 90-day finding on a petition to list the oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) range-wide, or in the alternative, as one or more distinct population segments (DPSs) identified by the petitioners as endangered or threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA). NMFS finds that the petition presents substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for the species worldwide. Accordingly, NMFS will initiate a status review of oceanic whitetip shark range-wide at this time. To ensure that the status review is comprehensive, NMFS is soliciting scientific and commercial information regarding this species. Information and comments on the subject action must be received by March 14, 2016 . For more information please see the Federal Register Notice.
Download the PDF of the federal register. Please send comments to the government to support the listing of the oceanic whitetip shark on the endangered species act.
On December 29 of 2016, NOAA Fisheries proposed listing the oceanic whitetip (OWT) shark (Cacharhinus longimanus) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. Based on the best scientific and commercial information available, including the status review report, and after taking into account efforts being made to protect the species, NOAA Fisheries determined that the OWT warrants listing as a threatened species, concluding the species is likely to become endangered throughout all or a significant portion of its range within the foreseeable future.
This report is a reply to NOAA Fisheries’ information request to assist in this listing determination, the development of proposed protective regulations, and the designation of critical habitat in the event this proposed listing determination is finalized.
Oceanic Whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) longline fisheries landing information from Costa Rica
Species specific longline fisheries landing data for OWT sharks in the Eastern Pacific are rare. The information presented here is the result of an analysis of recent Costa Rican longline fisheries landing data. The Costa Rican Fisheries Institute (Spanish acronym INCOPESCA) mandates that each longline fisheries landing must be supervised under the authority of an INCOPESCA officer before authorizing its commercialization. The inspector records species specific catch information, and verifies compliance with the Inter American Tropical Tuna Commission´s (IATTC) ban on catching, retaining, and commercializing OWT sharks, and the Central American wide agreement to ban the landing of shark fins separated from the carcasses and mandate to only allow the landing of shark carcasses with its fins naturally attached (OSPESCA, 2012). The fins are then hacked off the carcass in the presence of the officer, who then proceeds to weigh them. Finally, the officer fills in an “Inspection and Authorization of Landing Form (Spanish acronym FIAD),” with the aforementioned information, and the shark fins are authorized for commercialization. The FIAD is used by the Costa Rican authorities as a traceability system that guarantees that all shark fins entering the market were landed respecting regional and domestic regulations.
According to FIAD information, in 2011 domestic and foreign longline boats held 19 landing events in Puntarenas, Costa Rica, containing OWT sharks during which a total of 2,074 OWT shark bodies were landed, 25 landing events with OWT sharks in 2012 during which a total of 70 OWT shark bodies were landed, and 6 landing events with OWT sharks in 2013 during which a total of 17 OWT bodies were landed. The corresponding accumulated body weight was 25,920.9 kilos, 756.9 kilos, and 185 kilos, respectively. The total weight of landed OWT shark fins per year was 3,038.3 kilos, 64.8 kilos, and 7.7 kilos, respectively (Figure 1). No further landings have been recorded as of 2014.