Saturday, September 30, 2023

Sharks, Rays Declining Population Raises Concerns Over Impact on Ecosystems, Coastal Communities

The recent research raised concerns over the declining population of sharks and rays that could lead to possible extinction, which could have a devastating effect on ecosystems and coastal communities.

Experts raised concerns over the declining population of sharks and rays in oceans, and the challenges, from overfishing, rising global heating, and climate change.

The declining population could lead to catastrophic impacts on ecosystems and communities.

Climate change and global heating

Marine animals suffer from marine heat waves, affecting coral reefs, sharks, and rays.

The warming temperatures of oceans would be difficult for aquatic animals.

In the previous reports, The Guardian and Nature World News reported that the world’s oceans suffered from human-caused climate change.

In 2022, oceans reached the hottest record.

The rising temperatures of oceans have affected humans and marine biodiversity, which could not cope with extreme temperatures.

However, human-caused activities contribute to the threats to aquatic animals, including sharks and rays.

Sharks and rays’ possible extinction

(Photo : by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
October 19, 2009 in Gansbaai, South Africa.

In a new research published in Nature Communications, the report explained that sharks play a significant role in coral ecosystems.

Both sharks and rays suffer from population decline and local extinctions.

The study revealed that 14 out of 134 species they looked into are considered critically endangered.

The report discussed that overfishing is a major threat that leads to the decline of the said species.

The massive use of illegal fishing practices brings sharks and rays at concerning risks.

According to The Guardian, Professor Colin Simpfendorfer explained that sharks and rays managed to survive mass extinctions.

However, sharks and rays could not evade humans’ overfishing. Professor Colin is also a shark and rays expert.

The threat of overfishing has been concerning because it could cause the mass extinction of the said animals.

Also Read: World’s Ocean Suffers from Human-Caused Climate Change; Report Shows Hottest Ocean Records in 2022

In fact, the report said that it could be challenging to address without the commitment of countries, especially in areas where sharks and rays thrive.

Other than overfishing, the Defenders of Wildlife added that sharks and rays are considered endangered due to habitat loss, human-caused illegal practices, prey loss, and fisheries bycatch.

Impact on the marine ecosystem

According to The Guardian, marine biologist Professor Jodie Rummer explained that the absence of top predators, like sharks, could impact the marine ecosystem.

Meanwhile, Oceana Europe said that sharks are essential by controlling the ocean food chain. The presence of sharks also reveals the health of the ocean. Without sharks, the reef system could suffer devastating impacts.

The research added that larger shark species are more prone to risks, including hammerhead sharks, manta rays, and tiger sharks, according to the study’s lead author Dr. Samantha Sherman.

The report explained that the sharks roam around the world’s oceans and they could fall victims to fishing nets.

Ultimately, the study emphasized the importance of committed global actions to address the declining population of the said species.

Ultimately, both sharks and rays have endured the effect of climate-caused climate, overfishing, and declining population.

Without immediate policy and action, it would result in a devastating impact on the environment and become globally extinct.

Did you know? According to SeaWorld Orlando and Sharkinfo, the presence of dolphins threatens mighty sharks.

Related Article: Whale Sighted Off North Carolina’s Coast Suffers from Fishing Gear Entanglement, Serious Injury; Experts Raise Concerns

For more similar, don’t forget to follow Nature World News.

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