On a brighter note, Madagascar have established a 1,446 square mile shark sanctuary in Antongil Bay in the northwest of the country!
A sad day for sharks and shark conservationists worldwide. Dr Eugenie Clark was a pioneer in shark advocacy, fighting to change the image of one of natures most misunderstood top predators.
Last night Scuba Junkie, on Pulau Mabul, were lucky enough to have an extremely informative and eye-opening talk from David McGuire, the Director of Shark Stewards.
Working through Shark Stewards, David aims to promote the health of the delicate underwater ecosystem and facilitate the creation of Marine Protected Areas across the world. Part of the reason David is in Sabah is because he is working with the Sabah Shark Alliance and Scuba Junkie in gathering more support for th...e proposed Semporna Shark Sanctuary.
There was a great turn out for the talk; Scuba Junkie staff, interns and guests were all eager to hear what the ambassador for shark conservation had to say. They were not let down, as his presentation discussed the circumstances that sparked his passion for shark conservation, the reasons why it is crucial to revive shark populations and the changes he hopes to see in the future. This is in addition to showing us some stunning photos from diving around the world, in particular some amazing photos from ScubaZoo, based in Kota Kinabalu.
David has been diving with Scuba Junkie over the past few days and last night expressed his excitement for his upcoming day at Sipadan! He was not disappointed with numerous sharks on all dives - with devil ray encounters on two separate dives!
We are hugely grateful to David for visiting Scuba Junkie and giving his time to provide us with his wealth of information and support. We are sure his passion for shark conservation has inspired more people to support the creation of the Semporna Shark Sanctuary.
Shark sightings in the proposed area for the Semporna Shark Sanctuary have been amazing for this whole week on several different sites...whale sharks (two days running) on Pulau Mabul; spectacular schooling hammerheads for the past three days in a row at Pulau Sipadan - not to mention schools of devil rays and eagle rays seen at Si Amil every day this week! Videos to follow... Just an example of why more protection needed for this whole area!
In March 2014, Scuba Junkie organised a Shark Week to raise awareness and funds for shark and ray conservation in Sabah and worldwide....today they posted a 'Fangs for the Memories' thank you to all who got involved!
They raised an amazing RM8,000 for shark and ray conservation and involved hundreds of people in the week's activities!
We have been out station for the last month but work is continuing and we are working on several projects at the moment. One is planning a a huge reef check sur...vey in the area over a two week period to identify the health and pressures to the reef systems in the area. As for the species, We have been seeing the usual eagle rays, sharks, occasional whale shark over the last few months but we have been seeing HUNDREDS of Mobula Japanica or Spine Tail Devil Rays in schools of anywhere from 20 to over 100+ along the Sipadan Barrier reef, an area that has zero protection at this date but is with in the proposed SSS boundary... . We are so lucky to see these rays so close and in such numbers...... This is a PERFECT example of what we are trying to protect and we need more research on these elusive rays. An amazing site that needs our protection.....
We have been away for a little while but we are back and ready to start the push again. These are a few pics of Devil rays and Whale shark all seen within the proposed but as of yet, unprotected SSS area. We have also been conducting our fish market DNA survays on rays and are doing a talk at this years MIDE on sharks and rays....
Help ban the sale of Shark Fin products in Hong Kong-sign this important petition today: http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Extinction_is_forever_2/…
Malaysia From Below will be on Nat Geo Asia tonight at 9pm which stars Nick Baker and Alexander Cousteau. It will feature Sipadan and the the Semporna Shark Sanctuary-its a MUST watch and we are very proud to have been a small part of this documentary. For more info visit http://natgeotv.com/asia
The Semporna Shark Sanctuary Presentations went down brilliantly on Monday at the Kinabalu International School with the children learning heaps about sharks, biology, ecosystems and shark conservation. The children were incredibly smart and asked so many questions that even after the bell rang they didn't want to leave! Thanks again to the children and the staff at the Kinabalu International School for being so interested in sharks and the Semporna Shark Sanctuary! We will be back!! — Kinabalu International School Shark presentations.
The Semporna Shark Sanctuary Presentations went down brilliantly on Monday at the Kinabalu International School with the children learning heaps about sharks, b...iology, ecosystems and shark conservation. The children were incredibly smart and asked so many questions that even after the bell rang they didn't want to leave! Thanks again to the children and the staff at the Kinabalu International School for being so interested in sharks and the Semporna Shark Sanctuary! We will be back!!
We will be in Kinabalu International School (Kota Kinablu, Sabah,) on Monday 25 March sharing our love for Sharks and Rays with our youngest audience yet, 10 and 11 year olds!! We plan to spread these presentations into KL and Singapore this year.....We will keep you posted with locations and dates!!!
Our shark advisor Rohan Perkins will be giving a shark presentation at the Mabul Beach Resort at 8am tonight (20.3.13) Its a great presentation, its free to watch and all is welcome