Tuna bounce back, but sharks in ‘desperate’ decline

Tuna bounce back, but sharks in 'desperate' decline
Tuna swim long distances as they migrate. Source: Getty Images
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Daily US Times: Scientists have revealed that Tuna are starting to recover after being fished to the edge of extinction.

Following a decade of conservation efforts, tuna numbers are bouncing back, according to the official tally of threatened species.

But the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) said some tuna stocks remain in severe decline.

IUCN said pressures on marine life are continuing to grow and almost 4 in 10 sharks and rays are now threatened with extinction.

On land, the Komodo dragon, the heaviest lizard on Earth, is moving closer to oblivion. The animal faces threats from climate change, with fears its habitat could be affected by rising sea levels.

The revised list of the world’s endangered animals and plants was unleashed at the start of the world’s leading conservation congress, which is taking place in the French city of Marseille from 3 to11 September.

IUCN Director General Dr Bruno Oberle said that the news is a “powerful sign” that despite increasing pressure on our oceans, species can recover, if countries commit to sustainable practices.

He said that those gathered for the IUCN World Conservation Congress “must seize the opportunity to boost ambition on biodiversity conservation”.

The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species is the “gold standard” for measuring how close plant and animal species are to dying out. Over the last half-century, some 139,000 species have been assessed with nearly 39,000 now threatened with extinction, while 902 have gone extinct.

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