| Visual identification of fins from common Elasmobranchs in the northwest Atlantic ocean - :8631 | National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)
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Visual identification of fins from common Elasmobranchs in the northwest Atlantic ocean
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    "Shark fins are a highly prized commodity in many Asian cultures (Fong and Anderson, 2000; Clarke et al., 2007). Sharks sourced for fins come from directed fisheries, from bycatch in multi-species fisheries, and illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fisheries (Lack and Sant, 2008). Despite the fact that expanding global demand for shark products (especially fins) has resulted in substantially increased exploitation of sharks worldwide, utilization and trade in shark parts remains poorly assessed in terms of its species composition and magnitude. The limited data available are often difficult to interpret and are often not accurate enough to indicate which species and regions are most affected by the trade (Rose, 1996; Clarke, 2002; Clarke, 2004). In response to the international trade in fins and other products, the status of several elasmobranch species, the white (Carcharodon carcharias), basking (Cetorhinus maximus) and whale shark (Rhincodon typus) have been listed in Appendix II and 4 species of sawfish (Family Pristidae) in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The porbeagle (Lamna nasus), oceanic whitetip (Carcharhinus longimanus), scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini), smooth hammerhead (Sphyrna zygaena) and great hammerhead (Sphyrna mokarran) shark have also been proposed for listing in Appendix II of CITES due to the large volume and high value of their fins in the international trade market"--Introduction, paragraph 1.

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