IUCN Species of the Day: Porbeagle Shark


The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(tm)

Photo credit: S. Campana/Canadian Shark Research Lab


The Porbeagle, Lamna nasus, is listed as ‘VULNERABLE’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™. It is found worldwide in temperate and cold-temperate waters. Subpopulations in the Northeast Atlantic and Mediterranean are classified as ‘Critically Endangered’, and that of the Northwest Atlantic as ‘Endangered’.

The greatest threat to this shark is unsustainable commercial fishing. A low reproductive rate and high commercial value, both in target and incidental fisheries, make the Porbeagle highly vulnerable to overexploitation, and populations in the North Atlantic have been seriously depleted, while those in the Mediterranean have virtually disappeared. Little information is available from the southern oceans, where its population status is unknown.

Catches of Porbeagles are regulated in the EU and New Zealand, and the species is included in fishery management plans in Canada and the USA. However, the international trade in Porbeagle meat that drives many fisheries is currently unregulated, and a proposal to list the species on Appendix II of CITES, which makes international trade without a permit illegal, was rejected earlier this year.


Geographic Range of the Porbeagle

Credit: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™


To learn more about the Porbeagle, click here.  Or visit the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ by clicking their logo below.

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To learn more about the Bush Warriors “Species of the Day” feature, please click here and read up on our initiative to raise awareness about the loss of earth’s biodiversity.