Extension activities for PNG's shark fishery

Project code
AUD 80,000
Research program manager
Prof Ann Fleming
Project leader
William White - CSIRO National Collections and Marine Infrastructure
Commissioned organisation
JUN 2018
JUN 2019
Project status
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A previous ACIAR project which investigated the shark and ray resources of PNG (FIS/2012/102) generated a large number of scientific outputs ranging from biodiversity lists, to ecological studies and demographic models, to socio-economic analyses and a policy brief. However, only limited outreach to the broader general audience and the communities was achieved in that project. The current project focused on generating outreach and communication material to convey the scientific results of the previous project to a more general audience and to support the PhD candidature of a key PNG team member.

Project outcomes

The project generated 3 pamphlets and 6 posters to convey the major findings of FIS/2012/102 to a wider audience. The pamphlets were:

  • shark fisheries in PNG and need for management
  • sawfish and river sharks in PNG
  • shark fishing in the Louisiade Archipelago.

The posters were: overall shark biodiversity; overall ray biodiversity; sharks caught in longline fisheries; sharks and rays caught in trawl fisheries; sharks and rays caught in Milne Bay coastal fisheries; and new species of sharks and rays described during the project. Printed copies and soft copies of each pamphlet and poster were provided to NFA for dissemination. A project video was produced to communicate the aims and main findings of the shark and ray research conducted in PNG by ACIAR. The 4:35 min video has been made available to NFA and ACIAR for dissemination to a wider audience. Such videos are beneficial for NFA and ACIAR to highlight to the general audience the importance of collaborative research being undertaken on capture fisheries in PNG.

A draft website was developed to capture the information provided in the Sharks and Rays of PNG book which was one of the major outputs of FIS/2012/102 being published in 2018. The website provides a more accessible medium for users to identify and learn about the shark and ray biodiversity in PNG as well as read information on the ecology, utilisation and conservation status of the species. It also importantly provides a mechanism to keep the biodiversity information for sharks and rays up to date with any taxonomic changes being updated and any additional species being added as found. The website combined with the printed book will help improve identification of shark and ray resources which will lead to improved fisheries assessments in the future, as well as aid training of data collectors.