WILMINGTON — An international ocean conservation group is looking for support to ban the shark fin trade in the U.S.

Oceana, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting the oceans, is seeking signatures on a petition to ban trading shark fins in the U.S.

Oceana representative Randy Sturgill of Wilmington circulated the petition July 14, calling for signatures online at act.oceana.org/page/82222/action/1?ea.tracking.id=vanity.

One local marine research institute said shark abundance has been in decline, even in North Carolina’s waters. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Institute of Marine Sciences in Morehead City said in its July 2021 edition of The Coastal Tar Heel, its monthly e-newsletter, abundance and shark sizes have dropped 25% to 50% since the 1970s.

“Commercial and recreational fishing have contributed to decreased shark populations,” the institute said. “Sharks have been on Earth over 400 million years; 50 different shark species can be found in North Carolina waters.”

Shark finning is a practice in which sharks are caught commercially and have their fins cut off, after which they are thrown back in the water to die. According to the Oceana, this practice is driven by the market for shark fin soup, which is a luxury item in some cuisines.

“Although shark finning is illegal in (U.S.) waters, fins can still be bought and sold in the United States,” Oceana said, “and we’re importing from countries where there are inadequate protections in place for sharks. A national prohibition would improve enforcement of the current finning ban, reinforce the status of the United States as a leader in shark conservation and bring the world closer to ending the devastating trade in shark fins.”

According to the petition website, each year up to 73 million sharks lose their fins to the shark fin trade. In 2019, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a fin ban, but the U.S. Senate “failed to act.”

“Fortunately, we have another chance to ban the sale of shark fins once and for all,” Oceana said.

The Senate has recently passed Senate Bill 1106, known as the Shark Fin Sales Elimination Act. A partner bill, H.R. 2811, has also been introduced in the House.


Reporter Mike Shutak contributed to this article. 

(8) comments

David Collins

In the diverse world we live in , there is a segment that relishes shark fin soup as a delicacy , a treat if you will . While the practice of finning is banned , supposedly , in US waters that leaves quite a bit of the oceans open to this practice . We can do very little or nothing about that . Shark fins are a commodity , pure and simple . The trade in shark fins will continue until the demand dries up rendering the business unprofitable .

What we in the US can do is make it illegal to possess shark fins in any shape or form on our shores . That includes dried and powdered shark fins along with rhino horns and bear parts . Some of our Asian brothers and sisters believe them to be endowed with mystical healing powers , even now . Hence the demand and resulting poaching . The old supply and demand thing .

Remember , just because we do not like something does not mean the rest of the world will fall in line with us . That also applies to a multitude of other issues as well .


Deception 101 continues to follow suit with modern-day liberals…

Marine experts in Australia are urging the public to refrain from using the word "attack" in reference to sharks, declaring that the majestic predatory fish has been unfairly stigmatized as a deliberate killer.

Instead, officials have suggested that violent run-ins with sharks be dubbed with more neutral words such as "interactions" or "incidental".


In an article about banning the trade in shark fins again we are treated to anti liberal sniping. Perhaps everyone should read moby D*** and see what obsession brings? ( the profanity bot won't allow the correct word)

David Collins

Nice but if they don’t attack their prey , how do they eat ? Do they have Australian soup kitchens for sharks over there ? One never knows these days .


Sharks taste bad - like eating balsa wood. Sharks eat people with no regard to race. We all taste good. Problem solved. Next crisis please. Save the sea gull??

David Collins

Being immersed in liberalism does have it’s consequences . Your going through what the opposition has endured for years .


This topic is now closed

David Collins

No surprise . Would really like to have viewed various opinions on this subject , oh Weii .

Welcome to the discussion.

As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to edit or remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, anti-Semitism, or personal/abusive/condescending attacks on other users or goading them. The same applies to trolling, the use of multiple aliases, or just generally being a jerk. Enforcement of this policy is at the sole discretion of the site administrators and repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without warning.