Hammerhead shark nursery discovered in Galapagos


A team of researchers has discovered a nursery of hammerhead sharks off the coast of an island in Ecuador’s Galapagos archipelago, a finding that could help protect the species from extinction.

The so-called paradise for hammerhead sharks, less than a year old, was discovered near Isabela Island, the largest island of the Galapagos and provides a refuge for the sharks during their mating and developmental stages. initial.

“The discovery of these new breeding grounds is very important, especially for hammerhead sharks,” park ranger Eduardo Espinoza said in a statement Friday from the National Park. Galapagos.

“This is an iconic species of the Galapagos, but it is critically endangered.”

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) considers the shelled hammerhead shark, which is found in the Galapagos, to be “critically endangered”.

It is largely threatened by commercial fishing and the need for their fins to make shark fin soup.

Researchers have spent months scouring the archipelago for possible nursery sites as part of a hammerhead shark surveillance program.

Park scientists had previously identified two other sites with similar features on nearby islands.

“We tried to include these nurseries on the list of important areas for shark conservation, a new protection category under the IUCN,” said Espinoza.

Researchers are monitoring nurseries to monitor juvenile shark populations in nursery areas and track their migration patterns.

The Galapagos Islands with its unique wildlife were crucial to British scientist Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. It is home to many species not found elsewhere such as giant tortoises, flightless cormorants and marine iguanas.

(Reporting by Alexandra Valencia; Writing by Kylie Madry; Editing by Bill Berkrot)

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