Basking sharks will be protected by the Government under the Wildlife Act after a long campaign by marine scientists.
It is the second largest shark and fish in the world, here called the “liabhán chor gréine”, or the “great fish of the sun”.
This species is one of three species of plankton-eating shark, along with whale sharks and megamouth sharks.
Breeding basking sharks are estimated at 8,000 to 10,000 worldwide, mostly in the northeastern Atlantic Ocean.
Simon Berrow of the Irish Basking Shark Group said Ireland is “globally important” to the species.
He said evidence suggests that shark fishing does not occur in high numbers globally but that Irish waters, at certain times of the year, can account for a “significant proportion” of the global population. world.
“They are the second largest fish in the world, they grow up to 9 to 10 meters, so they are large fishMr. Berrow said.
“Historically, we have a huge cultural connection with shark fishing. They have been hunted by farmers off the west coast for hundreds of years indeed, and it’s well-documented.
“The most recorded basking sharks in the world were on Achill Island, where they killed large numbers in the 1950s and 1960s. They were killed for the oil in their livers and are still being killed. killed until the 80s in Ireland by the Norwegians and up to the 2000s in EU waters.
“The irony is that they are not protected in Irish waters. They are protected in UK waters under their Wildlife Act, and they are protected in Northern Ireland waters. “
“So it’s definitely anomalous that we haven’t protected them even though Ireland is more strongly associated with shark fishing than probably any other country. ”
https://www.independent.ie/news/basking-sharks-to-finally-get-state-protection-under-wildlife-act-as-irish-waters-hold-significant-proportion-of-the-global-population-41443014.html Shark fishing to finally receive state protection under the Wildlife Act as Irish waters make up a ‘significant proportion’ of the global population