In September 2023 we received and posted a video on our social media of showing Bull sharks being hunted and killed during their pupping season in the Seychelles. The Instagram post can be viewed here.
In response Shark Guardian Director Brendon Sing has drafted an open letter titled:
Urgent Appeal to Halt Shark Fishing in Seychelles
Mr Flavien Joubert
Minister of Agriculture, Climate Change and Environment
Minister of Fisheries and Agriculture.
Mr Nichol John Elizabeth
Chief Executive Officer of the Seychelles Fishing Authority
I am writing to express my deep concern about the ongoing shark fishing, particularly the targeting of pregnant bull sharks in the waters off the Seychelles. As a concerned global citizen and advocate for marine conservation, I strongly believe that the time has come for the Seychelles government to take action and address this pressing issue.
Bull sharks play a vital role in the marine ecosystem, contributing significantly to the balance of ocean life. Beyond their awe-inspiring presence, they serve as key guardians of ocean health. As one of the most abundant apex predators globally, bull sharks actively regulate the populations of various marine species, upholding the intricate harmony of marine environments. Their reproductive method (Viviparity) sets them apart from other sharks, enabling them to give birth to live offspring. Female bull sharks typically undergo a gestation period lasting 10 to 12 months, resulting in fewer pups compared to other species. This limited reproductive rate renders them susceptible to the perils of overfishing and habitat degradation.
Despite their importance, bull sharks are currently facing threats from overfishing and habitat destruction. The unsustainable practice of shark fishing, including the capture of bull sharks, has significant repercussions on our marine ecosystem. The Seychelles, with its remarkable biodiversity and stunning natural beauty, should lead by example in the preservation of our oceans.
I am aware that shark fishing, including that of bull sharks, has economic implications. However, we must not compromise the long-term health of our oceans and the tourism industry that relies on the unique marine life found in Seychelles waters. By conserving our natural resources and preserving the habitat of these incredible creatures, we can secure a sustainable and prosperous future for Seychelles.
I urge the Seychelles government to take the following actions:
Implement stricter regulations on shark fishing, with a particular emphasis on protecting bull sharks.
Promote and support research initiatives that study the habits and migratory patterns of bull sharks to better understand and protect them.
Collaborate with international organizations and experts in marine conservation to develop and implement comprehensive conservation plans.
Educate the public and raise awareness about the importance of shark conservation and its benefits to the Seychelles.
It is not too late to make a difference. By taking decisive action to protect bull sharks, the Seychelles can showcase its commitment to preserving its unique marine environment, attracting environmentally conscious tourists, and bolstering its reputation as a leader in marine conservation.
I kindly request your attention to this urgent matter. Together, we can work towards a sustainable future where both marine life and our economy thrive.
Evidence for rapid recovery of shark populations within a coral reef marine protected area
Seychelles: A case study of community involvement in the development of whale shark ecotourism and its socio-economic impact
Relationship of mercury and selenium in ocean fish frequently consumed in the Seychelles: A comparison to levels in ocean fish consumed in the US