Shark Adoption Kit

Your adoption supports our work to pass laws outlawing shark finning and the sale, possession, and trade of shark fins.

Photo: Ed Gullekson

Shark Adoption Kit

As low as $25.00
Sharks have inhabited Earth’s oceans for 400 million years - they even pre-date the dinosaurs by an estimated 200 million years. There are more than 465 known species of sharks living in our oceans today, but these amazing predators are disappearing at an alarming rate. While it is impossible to know how many sharks are killed yearly due to illegal and unrecorded catch, it is estimated that up to 73 million sharks are killed annually by “finning” alone—a brutal practice that involves cutting off a shark’s fins, usually while it is still alive.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates that over one quarter of the world’s sharks are threatened with extinction. Some species have declined as much as 99 percent! Research has shown that massive depletion of sharks has cascading effects throughout the ocean’s ecosystems. While it is impossible to know how many sharks are killed yearly due to illegal and unrecorded catch, it is estimated that up to 73 million sharks are killed annually by “finning” alone—a brutal practice that involves cutting off a shark’s fins, usually while it is still alive. Shark fins are then used to make shark fin soup, a traditional Asian delicacy.

In addition to being taken intentionally for their fins, sharks are often accidentally caught up in fishing nets and on lines – a phenomenon referred to as “bycatch.” When lines are unattended, such as in some longline fisheries, the toll can be particularly high.

Your adoption supports Defenders’ work to pass laws outlawing shark finning and the sale, possession and trade of shark fins in many states and countries. We also work through the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) to put a stop to unregulated shark fin trade, and gain greater protection for declining shark species.