The Great White Shark, immortalized by the Hollywood film Jaws, is at the midst of an international controversy. The shark, despite its notoriety, is in danger of extinction. A conflict over the fate of these sharks has existed for decades, but with recent attacks the debate has come to the forefront. The environmental conflict over the Great White Shark has yet to reach a conclusion, as many factors exist that hinder resolution possibilities. The purpose of this paper is to provide background information on the debate in an attempt to understand why consensus has so far been unattainable. This paper provides basic information including subsequent legislation, stakeholders, factors to consider, and proposed solutions. By understanding the context of this conflict, possible methods that could assist in resolving the debate may be determined and recommended.
Great White Sharks can be found virtually anywhere in the world but they tend to prefer temperate waters off the coasts of Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, the California and the eastern U.S., and Mexico. In its natural environment, this shark has only one enemy, the Orca whale. However, the shark's most threatening predator is humans. Great White Sharks have a monstrous reputation with society due to the sensationalized media that accompanies them. Sharks are killed for numerous reasons through commercial fishing, sport fishing, or for body parts such as fins. An estimated seventy million sharks are killed annually due to trade and many more sharks are also killed accidentally in fishermen's nets (Shark Conservation Through Legislation, 2001, http). Trade for fins, teeth, and jaws also result in thousand...
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