Recently, Representative Fong (D-Cupertino) and Representative Huffman (D-San Rafael) proposed AB 376, a ban on shark fins in California. The bill, adding to section 2021 of the California Fish and Game Code, would give California a chance to save sharks and the ocean.
Shark finning is a cruel process that involves the fins of a shark being cut off, often when the animal is still alive. The shark is then thrown back into the ocean, no longer able to swim. The mutilated shark sinks to the bottom of the ocean and may not die immediately. Without fins, the shark will bleed to death, drown, or be eaten by other animals. This whole process is done for the fins of the shark, nothing else.
This bill allows California a chance to be a leader in the fight for animal protection and environmental conservation. AB 376 makes it unlawful to possess, sell, offer to sell, trade, or distribute a shark fins.
This is important because sharks are particularly susceptible to decline due to overfishing. Sharks are slow to reach reproductive maturity and birth by small litters, and cannot rebuild their populations quickly when being overfished.
Another key factor is that sharks are at the top of the marine food chain. This is an urgent problem because it upsets the balance of the species in ocean ecosystems, and therefore is a threat to biodiversity.
It is known that there is a decline in shark populations worldwide. The practice of shark finning is leading to the extinction of many species of sharks. Unknown to many people, California is a key market for shark fins, a multi billion-dollar industry around the world.
At this key moment in time, California can reduce the demand for fins that drives the cruel practice of shark finning altogether.
Please take the time to support this bill, reducing the demand for shark fins in California. Contact you local congress member and tell them you want them to support this bill. Send a letter or email, or make a call to your local representative.
Give the ocean a voice!