Hollie Booth, Sharks and Rays Advisor, SE Asia Archipelago, WCS Indonesia, gives a talk for the symposium on her research in Indonesia and the overexploitation of sharks.
With rapid global expansion of fishing and trade in recent decades, coupled with conservative life history strategies making them particularly vulnerable to overfishing, sharks and rays are now one of the most threatened species groups in the world. Indonesia is at the heart of the coral triangle: the global centre of marine biodiversity. It is also the world’s largest shark fishery. For these reasons, Indonesia has been identified as a global geographic priority for conserving sharks and rays, including several species recently listed on CITES Appendix II. There is considerable momentum within Indonesia to improve conservation and management of sharks and rays, and The Wildlife Conservation Society is currently developing a cross-cutting program of work, which seeks to address the overexploitation of sharks and rays with multi-faceted interventions from point of supply to point of demand. However, implementing practical conservation measures in a country as large, diverse and under-resourced as Indonesia is incredibly challenging. This presentation explores findings from WCS Indonesia’s applied research and practical experiences to illustrate the complexity of shark conservation and the need for multi-faceted approaches that go beyond CITES listings and legality.