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Saving Sharks

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There's good news and bad news in the world of sharks.

Sharks are increasingly scarce across the world's oceans due in large part to finning and the appetite for shark fin soup. Up to 73 million sharks are killed each year for the fin trade and the International Union for Conservation of Nature reports that 30 percent of shark and ray species assessed are threatened or near-threatened with extinction. That's the bad news, to put it lightly.

The good news is there's a growing shark conservation trend being undertaken by governments across the globe to help these apex predators rebound from years of intense overfishing.

In the United States, the Shark Conservation Act was signed into law by President Obama in January 2011. Around the globe, Palau, Honduras, the Maldives and The Bahamas have all established shark sanctuaries in their national waters in just the past few years, making 926,645 square miles of the world's oceans free of shark fishing. And there may be even more good news in the months ahead.

The Pew Environment Group, shark conservation advocates, created this interactive map complete with video and still images of sharks to track the progress made on shark conservation thus far. Check it out!

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Close Encounters of the Oceanic Kind
Cocos Islands 2010
Cooper River, South Carolina
Conserving Sharks
Diving in Behind the Scenes
Extinct for Soup?
Filming Great Whites
Growing Up Sharks
Man Meets Shark
Myths and Truths About Sharks
Shark Identification Quiz
Sharks of the Bahamas
Sharks of the Bahamas: The Slideshow
Shooting Great Whites
The Great White Shark Experience
Toothy Loiterers
Underwater Updates - Cape Town