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Top 10 Shark Conservation Projects

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by: Josh Clark
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Reporting the Danger Sharks Face in Scholarly Journals
DCI | Ric Frazier/Getty Images

In 2008, researcher Francesco Feretti and his colleagues published a startling and important survey of shark population declines in the Mediterranean Sea. Feretti and his co-authors pored over all available data on Mediterranean shark populations over the past two centuries. The group looked at the log books of area fishermen from as far back as 1827, evaluated data from yacht clubs that housed sport fishing records and even read the sales records from a fish market in the Maltese city of Valetta.

By cobbling together all of the data they could find on sharks that were directly hunted, inadvertently caught with other fish or even just sighted, the group compiled a bleak picture of the Mediterranean shark population. They found that all shark species decreased in numbers by an average of 97 percent over the past 150 to 200 years.

Studies like Feretti's help people understand the alarming situation that sharks face worldwide. Specifically, the 2008 project provided a research model for other studies around the globe to follow.

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