A new study finds that populated islands are not the place to do shark dives, as many as 90 percent of reef sharks have disappeared from their reefs. A study printed in Conservation Biology shows.
Researchers at the University of Miami pulled shark-sighting data from more than 1,607 dives at 46 reefs in the central-western Pacific, from populated sites like the Hawaiian Islands and American Samoa to reefs nearly devoid of human influence, to see the numbers of gray, black-tip, white-tip, Galapagos and tawny nurse sharks. In the populated areas, reef shark numbers were greatly depressed, compared to reef sharks in the same regions that were farther away from humans, meaning less than 10 percent of the baseline numbers remain in those areas. Human influences far outweighed natural ones for the decline. (From Undercurrent 05/2012)