Hands Off My Fins!

6" x 4" $150
Edition of 16, 2005
Printed on gray Magnani Pescia Satinado paper

Despite their fierce reputation, sharks are among the most vulnerable of the oceans' animals. Sharks generally grow slowly, mature late, and produce few young, leaving them exceptionally susceptible to overfishing and slow to recover once depleted. Today, after 400 million years of evolution, most of the world's 400+ shark species are at mounting risk from overfishing and loss of key habitats. Increasing demand for the Asian delicacy "shark fin soup" creates incentive for "finning"-the practice of slicing off a shark's fins and discarding the less valuable carcass at sea. Partly due to the negative image held by the public, sharks are too often low priority for conservation programs and are thus sorely underprotected. Scores of shark populations are now considered "threatened" by the IUCN-World Conservation Union, with several species facing serious threat of extinction. Given their roles as top predators, losing sharks could seriously upset the balance of ocean ecosystems.

Sharks need all the support they can get. Contact your government representatives to request precautionary shark fishery management programs and protection for the most vulnerable shark species in U.S. waters and through international treaties.

Information provided by The Ocean Conservancy. To learn more about its work advocating for wild, healthy oceans, please visit www.oceanconservancy.org

Hands Off My Fins!