on Feb 08, 2019 by Sneik-iD Sneik-iD
Big Game Fishing
Big game fishing has been a past-time of many a fisherman. Like hunting generally in big game fishing you are fishing to catch trophy fish. That might be a big Tuna, Marlin, Mahi-Mahi or even a Mako Shark. When discussing conservation status, there are three groups and 8 categories. The three groups are Extinct, Threatened and Low Risk. Whilst the categories are Extinct, Extinct in the Wild, Critically Endangered, Endangered, Vulnerable, Near Threatened, Conservation Dependent and Least Concern. The official term "threatened" is a grouping of three categories: critically endangered, endangered, and vulnerable.
Of those 4 prize trophy Two of those prized fish have their conservation status listed as Vulnerable and one is listed as near threatened. It’s indisputable that commercial fishing and over fishing of stocks is the main reason for the decline in Mako Shark and Marlin populations, often time even if boats aren’t fishing for these animals they often catch them as a bycatch.
It’s so damaging to these populations, more so for the Mako Shark. With it’s longer lifespan it can take up to 18 years for a single shark to reach sexual maturity. So smaller sharks which are caught are often caught and killed before they have the chance to reproduce. On top of that the Mako is classed as a pelagic shark, this means it travels great distances In December 1998, a female tagged off California was captured in the central Pacific by a Japanese research vessel, meaning this fish traveled over 1,725 mi (2,776 km). Another specimen swam 1,322 mi (2,128 km) in 37 days, averaging 36 mi (58 km) a day.
So what? How is that relevant?
Sharks and other marine life which travel long distances are near impossible to keep in aquariums meaning that conservation of these animals is extremely difficult. This small group of animals also includes the Great White Shark, Oceanic White Tip Shark and the Blue Shark. Of all these animals the Mako has fared the worst at attempts to keep it in captivity. The current record is held by a specimen kept at the New Jersey Aquarium for only five days in 2001. Like past attempts at keeping Mako’s in captivity, the animal appeared strong on arrival, but had trouble negotiating the walls of the aquarium, refused to feed, quickly weakened, and died.
The Mako Range
It’s hard to understand trophy hunting as a sport but take that out of the picture and focus on the other factors mentioned, the over fishing, long sexual maturity and the inability to help the animal in conservation efforts. It’s hard to see how you can fish Mako Sharks in a sustainable manner. It makes it even more remarkable and shocking when you log into instagram and see people trophy hunting these threatened animals, often catching with no intention of release. At a time when commercial overfishing is at its highest and animals are going extinct at an alarming rate it’s an indulgent pastime that is dangerous to the environment to say the least. As a keystone species it is imperative to raise awareness on the issues surrounding these sharks as most of the people fishing them probably aren’t aware of the full implications of fishing and eating Mako Sharks.
Here at Sneik-ID we’re focused on trying to make our shoes as eco-friendly as possible, that’s why we use recycled cork inner soles. These are great for allowing your feet to breathe properly as well as being environmentally sustainable and come as standard in all our shoes. You can view our Mako Range here.