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Research confirms shark sanctuary

Vilimaina Naqelevuki and Lice Movono
Thursday, March 01, 2018

Update: 3:39PM RESEARCH conducted by three universities confirm that certain species of hammerhead sharks find sanctuary in the Rewa reef.

The study finds that some of the species are vulnerable.

Conducted by the University of the South Pacific, University of Bremen and the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Ecology and Projects in Fiji, the study aimed to specifically determine the existence of a sanctuary in the Rewa River. 

Studies conducted by USP Head of Marine Studies Professor Ciro Rico between September 2014 and March 2016 found 1217 hammerhead shark captures. 

"In the lapse of six to 18 months, we were able to obtain 1217 hammerhead shark captures, a total of 952 were individual sharks and close to 101 recaptures, we were able to carry out the recaptures because of the key tags," the report said.

"163 sharks were captured by local fishermen as by-catch and they were given to us for DNA analysis."

In mid-2017, the head of the province of Rewa and Opposition leader Ro Teimumu Kepa announced a province-wide effort to formalise the protection of the sharks.

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