Creating capacities for the conservation of sharks in Honduras

Gabriela Ochoa

In Honduras, despite Shark Sanctuary Legislation, artisanal fishers in the Moskitia region continue overfishing sharks. This fishery targets endangered hammerheads and other sharks to meet the demand for dry fish during Lent. Most consumers are unaware they are eating endangered sharks. There are limited technical capacities in institutions which have the capacity to regulate shark products and there is a general misinformation in the non-consumptive importance of sharks. Our project seeks to create capacities in local stakeholders that will enable them to contribute directly to the conservation of shark populations within this region. Through the project we will build technical capacities in government institutions and partner organizations that can influence decision making on sharks. Increase regulatory capacity on illegal shark products and reduce demand on products through a behavior change campaign aimed at consumers. We will implement a communication campaign focused on creating understanding and fostering support for the conservation of sharks. Additionally, through project activities field gaps of information on the fishery and trade, while working closely with artisanal fishers. Results will be shared widely with government stakeholders through the Shark working group and contribute to apex shark predators being present in reefs in Honduras for the long term.

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