1. Overfishing has wiped out over 70 per cent of some shark and ray populations in the last half-century, leaving a “gaping, growing hole” in ocean life, according to a new study.
2. Among the worst affected is the oceanic whitetip, a powerful shark often described as particularly dangerous to man, which now hovers on the edge of extinction because of human activity, reports AFP.
3. Targeted for their fins, oceanic whitetips are caught up by indiscriminate fishing techniques. Their global population has dropped 98 percent in the last 60 years, said Nick Dulvy.
4. Dulvy and a team of scientists spent years collecting and analysing information from scientific studies and fisheries data to build up a picture of the global state of 31 species of sharks and rays.
5. The team found three-quarters of the species examined were so depleted that they face extinction.