This year the 26th Annual Monster Shark competition will take place on July 19th-21st in Oak Bluffs Martha's Vineyard MA, the same place that the legindary film JAWS was filmed and where many vacation goers flock for the summer sun and beach.
Shark populations around the globe have been decimated falling 90% over the last decade largely due to over-fishing to make "shark fin soup" an Chinese delicacy growing in popularity among Asia's middle class. Sharks are not easy to protect because of the stigma that surrounds them and we often do not have enough data to consider them as endangered. However, this should trigger us to protect them rather than fish them. Sharks are a keystone species and are apex predators and are crucial to help maintain the balance of the ocean's ecosystems. Furthermore, sharks are struggling to overcome attacks on their population as they are slow to mature and produce few offspring.
Help save these majestic and incredible creatures, older than dinosaurs, sharks survived two major extinctions, but maybe not the 21st century. We must put a stop to this Monster Shark Competition on the grounds of species preservation and plain old common sense!
Dear NOAA and Steven,
Please stop the annual MV Monster Shark Tournament. Shark numbers are decreasing at an unsustainable rate around the globe. This competition adds to the negative stigma that sharks are monsters and enemy of man. Sharks need to be protected and not hunted for recreational purposes or food until their populations are restored to self-sustaining levels.
Thank you for considering this issue.
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