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Triakis acutipinna

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA CHONDRICHTHYES CARCHARHINIFORMES TRIAKIDAE

Scientific Name: Triakis acutipinna
Species Authority: Kato, 1968
Common Name(s):
English Sharpfin Houndshark, Tollo
Spanish Tollo del Ecuador

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(v); C2a(ii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2009
Date Assessed: 2008-12-01
Assessor(s): Compagno, L.J.V., Kyne, P.M. & Domingo, A.
Reviewer(s): Valenti, S.V & Fowler, S.L. (Shark Red List Authority)
Justification:
The Sharpfin Houndshark (Triakis acutipinna) is an extremely rare shark, known only from a limited region of inshore continental Ecuador (the Province of Manabí). It is poorly known, and its exact distribution is uncertain. Since it was originally described from Isla de la Plata 40 years ago, the only other known records are rare landings from coastal gillnet fisheries in the nearby coastal fishing port of Daniel López (less than 39 km from Isla de la Plata). Its entire known extent of occurrence, as with the majority of the Ecudorian coastline, is subjected to effectively unregulated small-scale artisanal fisheries. These fisheries land various species of shark, and in some cases they target sharks (including houndsharks). A reduction in landings in small-scale coastal fisheries has been noted in recent years. It is unknown if the species is also taken in other inshore artisanal fisheries. Despite the lack of catch statistics and specimens of the species, the Sharpfin Houndshark's estimated extent of occurrence is considerably less than 5,000 km², as presently known. The population size is considered to be less than 2,500 individuals on the basis of very few records within a restricted area (with no evidence for genetically or geographically distinct populations), and a continuing decline in the number of mature individuals is suspected on the basis of continued unregulated exploitation throughout its known range. An assessment of catches and sampling of inshore fisheries should be a priority, to determine its exact extent of occurrence. If such sampling expands the species' known distribution, then this assessment would need to be revisited.
History:
2000 Vulnerable

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Southeast Pacific: found only in tropical continental waters of the Province of Manabí in Ecuador. The type locality is Isla de La Plata (01°16'-29.28'S, 81°04'-12.10'W) (Kato 1968, Compagno in prep. b), and it has also been recorded in landings of the coastal fishing port of Daniel López (21 nm from Isla de La Plata) (J. Martínez pers. comm.).
Countries:
Native:
Ecuador
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Pacific – southeast
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Unknown.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The habitat and ecology of Triakis acutipinna is virtually unknown. Documented specimens are a 102 cm TL adult female and a 90 cm TL adult male caught inshore (Kato 1968, Compagno in prep. b). All life-history parameters are unknown.
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Throughout Ecuador, several (mainly artisanal) fisheries land various species of carcharhinoid sharks (including houndsharks) as bycatch. In some cases, small-scale fishing communities have specifically targeted sharks, however target fisheries for sharks were prohibited in 2004 (see Conservation Measures). Catch statistics are limited, with inadequate monitoring of fishing activities and landings. Bostock and Herdson (1985) estimated that in the early 1980s small-scale fishers landed some 1,800-2,000 t of sharks per year. Later catch estimates from only a subset of landing ports amounted to ~4,000 t/year for 1993-1995. Martínez (1999) noticed a reduction in shark landings in small-scale coastal fisheries in more recent years when compared with those of the early 1980s.

The sharpfin houndshark is rarely landed in coastal monofilament gillnet artisanal fisheries in the fishing port of Daniel López in Manabí, Ecuador (J. Martínez pers. comm.). It is unknown if the species is taken in other inshore artisanal fisheries.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There is little effective management of inshore fishing activities in continental Ecuador. Specific management regulations have been lacking, but the recent development of a shark plan and recently introduced measures should lead to improvements. Decree 2130 banned target fisheries and fin trade in 2004, but implementation and enforcement was insufficient and fins continued to be exported illegally. Subsequently, Decree 486 permitted trade in fins from bycatch, mandated the full utilisation of all shark meat, and required monitoring of all bycatch and a licensing system for the trade of fins. This decree provided an important means of monitoring shark catches.

Field surveys are required to accurately document the species? distribution and habitat requirements. An assessment of what fisheries are catching the species and where it is being landed is also required. The sharpfin houndshark, along with other inshore elasmobranch species, would then benefit from effective regulation of these fisheries. However, given the rarity of this species, along with its occurrence in exploited inshore waters, it likely requires more immediate conservation actions, i.e. full protection.

Citation: Compagno, L.J.V., Kyne, P.M. & Domingo, A. 2009. Triakis acutipinna. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.1. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 23 July 2014.
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