Tattoo of the Day
Tattoo by Boris.
The largest great hammerhead on record was caught by fishermen in 2006 off the coast of Sarasota, Florida. The female shark was 14 feet long, weighed nearly 581 kilograms (1,280 pounds), and had a “hammer” that was more than three feet wide. In her stomach, they found an entire southern stingray and the rear half of a five foot (one and half meter) tarpon. She also had 52 near-term pups in her uterus. Her body was donated to Mote Marine Laboratory. Dr. Hueter, director if Mote Marine Laboratory’s Center for Shark Research had this to say about the shark:
“Although we are thankful that the fisherman gave this unique specimen to Mote, and we are learning a lot about this species from this large female shark, we were saddened to see so many unborn pups inside her so close to birth. We ask fishermen not to kill sharks for sport and to remember that shark populations have been severely depleted by overfishing. Very large sharks like this hammerhead are often pregnant females that help maintain the status of the species’ population into the future. We advocate release of these large sharks and the tagging of them whenever possible.”
Great hammerheads are listed as ‘endangered’ by the IUCN. According to the IUCN, “The Great Hammerhead is highly prized for its fins, and suffers very high levels of incidental mortality in other fisheries for tuna and tuna-like fishes. Like most other sharks, its slow growth and low reproduction rate makes it highly vulnerable to overexploitation. As a result, it has suffered serious declines, especially in parts of the eastern Atlantic where fishing effort is unmanaged and unmonitored.”
Remember: Tattoos are forever… and so is extinction. To see all of the FANTASTIC art featured on Bush Warriors Tattoo of the Day, and to learn more about this initiative, please click here. You can also share photos of your own wildlife tattoos and enjoy others’ at our Facebook group, Bush Warriors Inked Nation for Conservation.