| I am grateful for our work with sharks and the ocean victories we have achieved in 2011. After a five year battle initiated in the town of Tiburon (Spanish for shark) Sea Stewards and a coalition of ocean champions banned the sale and trade of shark fin in the entire state of California. What started with a documentary Sharks: Stewards of the Reef we made with our friends at Trillium films – where we documented brutally finned sharks and rails lined with drying fins – ended in increasing protection and appreciation of sharks here at home and across the globe.
The movement continues, and none too soon. By passing AB 376 we have stopped approximately 7 tons of fins coming into our ports. With Oregon, Washington and Hawaii, we are closing N. Pacific ports to the illegal trade of finned sharks. Pacific Island nations like Guam, the Marshall Islands, the FSM and Palau have declared shark sanctuaries with no shark killing. Yet still tens of millions of sharks are killed each year for their fins.
Fully one third of oceanic shark species are threatened with extinction and the finning continues. We must work hard to save the apex predators that keep the ocean healthy and wild.
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With our partners Team Fish Finders lead by master fisherman Steve Shirley, we have tagged another 75 Sevengill sharks in the San Francisco Bay. The return information is providing invaluable data to help better understand and protect these enigmatic apex predators. Next year we hope to use satellite tags to better understand movements.
This year we were voted a Hero of Marin Award for Environmental Stewardship for our work in ocean conservation by the Pacific Sun and supported by Circle Bank. Thanks Marin!
The 3rd annual Sharktoberfest celebrations and our Shark Stewards Program reached over 6000 people with 38 outreach events from films to lectures to parties including several White Shark & wildlife trips to the Farallon Islands.
This year we have made major steps towards the San Francisco Shark Sanctuary to protect sharks and ecosystems in the Bay.
Thanks to our supporter Lori Grace, we are building stakeholders for this pioneering San Francisco conservation area protecting sharks and the marine ecosystem of Paradise Cove Tiburon. Watch our events page for our next Save the Bay, Save the Oceans meeting January 26.
You can help by joining Sea Stewards by volunteering, participating or supporting sharks and sustainability in the San Francisco Bay and in the world ocean.
Watch for next year's Sharktoberfest, a Shark Tagging Derby on the Bay, the development of the Shark Sanctuary Program and supporting forage fish.
Please join our cause and help support the future of sharks and the San Francisco Bay and world ocean.
Thanks for your Support!
David McGuire, Director