Shark depredation in commercial and recreational fisheries

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

17 Citations (Scopus)


Shark depredation, where a shark partially or completely consumes an animal caught by fishing gear before it can be retrieved to the fishing vessel, occurs in commercial and recreational fisheries worldwide, causing a range of negative biological and economic impacts. Despite this, it remains relatively understudied compared to other fisheries issues. This is the first review of the literature relating to shark depredation, which also includes an overview of the potential mechanisms underlying its occurrence and options for mitigation. Furthermore, this review highlights key research gaps that remain to be investigated, thereby providing impetus for future research. In total, 61 studies have been published between 1955 and 2018, which include information on shark depredation. These studies recorded quantitative rates of depredation between 0.9 and 26% in commercial and recreational fisheries and during research fishing, identified 27 shark species from seven families that were responsible for depredation and discussed potential factors influencing its occurrence. Information from research into bycatch mitigation and the testing of shark deterrent approaches and technologies is also presented, in the context of applying these approaches to the reduction of shark depredation. This review presents an holistic overview of shark depredation in fisheries globally and, in doing so, provides a central resource for fisheries researchers and managers focusing on this topic to stimulate further collaborative research on this important fisheries issue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)715-748
Number of pages34
JournalReviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018

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