the light refracting off the ripples of the ocean surface creates fractal images such as this beautifully captured image on location off the coast of jupiter, florida onboard florida shark diving @floridasharkdiving courtesy of freediver and underwater photographer, tanner mansell @tanner_mansell and shared to us by real-life partner, passionate cetacean, orca and shark conservationist, janelle vanruiten @janelle_vanruiten - a curious caribbean reef shark checkin out @tanner_mansell camera on our dive with @floridasharkdiving !
the caribbean reef shark (carcharhinus perezii) is a species of requiem shark, belonging to the family carcharhinidae. it is found in the tropical waters of the western atlantic ocean from florida to brazil, and is the most commonly encountered reef shark in the caribbean sea. with a robust, streamlined body typical of the requiem sharks, this species is difficult to tell apart from other large members of its family such as the dusky shark (c. obscurus) and the silky shark (c. falciformis). distinguishing characteristics include dusky-colored fins without prominent markings, a short free rear tip on the second dorsal fin, and tooth shape and number.
Fins belong on sharks, not in soup...
over the last few decades shark populations have declined tremendously with one of the leading causes being bycatch. the term ‘bycatch’ is used for fish caught unintentionally in a fishery that is designated to catch other fish. longline fishing, typically used to catch tuna, employs miles of fishing line with thousands of hooks that indiscriminately catches whatever comes along to eat the bait. these ‘death nets’ from a small coastal fishery operation off the island of arguni in west papua are what led to the demise of these sharks. but this is just the tip of the iceberg: approximately 50 million sharks are caught globally as bycatch each year. 💔🦈
until recently, shark bycatch was considered a nuisance and sharks were cut loose and disposed of overboard, sometimes still alive. however, as shark fins have become increasingly valuable, there is little incentive to take measures to reduce shark bycatch. it is easier, and more profitable, to cut off the fins and discard the bodies at sea. if it wasn’t for the valuable fins, these sharks would probably not be retained!
so what’s the solution? education, sustainable fishing methods/gear, and enforcement. thanks to the efforts of the @conservationid teams in west papua, i have hope we can turn things around. but we must act quickly! healthy oceans need thriving shark populations, and many species are literally on the brink on extinction. when the buying stops, the killing can, too.. #savesharks#worthmorealive#provinsikonservasi#racingextinction#sharkfin