Endangered shark found. Eaten.

Fisherman in the Philippines snared an extremely rare megamouth shark, one of only 40 or so known to be left in the world. Then they ate it. From the Associated Press:
Megasharkrkrkrr The 1,100-pound, 13-foot megamouth died while struggling in the fishermen's net on March 30 off Burias island in the central Philippines. It was taken to nearby Donsol in Sorsogon province, where it was butchered and eaten, said Gregg Yan, spokesman for WWF-Philippines.

Yan said a WWF Donsol Project Manager Elson Aca took pictures of the megamouth and tried to dissuade the fishermen from eating it. Shark meat is the main ingredient in a local delicacy.
Rare megamouth shark caught, eaten in Philippines

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  1. To be fair it’s not “one of only 40 or so known to be left in the world”, it’s “one of only 40 *ever* recorded”. So: incredibly rare, but also unknown quite how rare it is, the oceans being quite as big and deep as they are…

  2. I won’t have problems of them eating it since it was already dead. I just hoped they saved the bones for studying. Also, with the appearance of the species on that part of the globe, I hope local officials make a way to protect them in the future.

  3. I won’t have problems of them eating it since it was already dead. I just hoped they saved the bones for studying. Also, with the appearance of the species on that part of the globe, I hope local officials make a way to protect them in the future.

  4. This is misleading. The article doesn’t state, nor would any marine biologist worth his salt claim, that 40 Megamouth sharks are left in the world. 40 have been caught over the last 50 years or so and, though I’m not certain, I don’t think any of those survived, either.

    This isn’t a species that’s sought for food. It’s not sought by sport fishermen, either. The main reason so few have been seen/caught are because they live in deep water and nobody has really looked. If Megamouths are rare, it’s unlikely to be b/c of any action on our part.

    Implying that the villagers did something wrong by eating a fish that was already dead smacks of arrogance. There are more important environmental battles to fight.

  5. This is misleading. The article doesn’t state, nor would any marine biologist worth his salt claim, that 40 Megamouth sharks are left in the world. 40 have been caught over the last 50 years or so and, though I’m not certain, I don’t think any of those survived, either.

    This isn’t a species that’s sought for food. It’s not sought by sport fishermen, either. The main reason so few have been seen/caught are because they live in deep water and nobody has really looked. If Megamouths are rare, it’s unlikely to be b/c of any action on our part.

    Implying that the villagers did something wrong by eating a fish that was already dead smacks of arrogance. There are more important environmental battles to fight.

  6. Be fair. The shark certainly would have done the same to the fishermen given half a chance.

  7. yessss… I suppose it could have held a fisherman in its mouth for a few months until it rotted down to krill sized bits…

  8. Megamouth sharks are plankton feeders, so… no, it wouldn’t and couldn’t have done the same to the fisherman given any chance.

  9. Americans lunch on a hamburger, drive back to the office in their SUVs, fat on grease and high on sugar. They read story about evil and backwards Phillippinos eating an endangered shark and ring their fists in anger about the state of the environment. Must send troops! Must wage a global war on environmental villains.

    Breaking news!!

  10. Ya see, there’s where T.S. Elliot went wrong.

    The world doesn’t end with a bang OR a whimper … it ends with a snack.

  11. @#9 Vennblender

    What article did you read? I didn’t see any judgements about evil backward Philippinos in the one I read. Even if there had been, I wouldn’t ally all of America with opinions expressed by the crack news team at Yahoo.com. (Although their Lindsay Lohan coverage is generally spot on).

    …But I’m just a vegetarian American who doesn’t own a car, so what do I know?

  12. Vennblender: 0 to Godwin in 7 posts. Do we have a record? Gee, you don’t have any chips on your shoulder, do you?

    It would have been nice if they could have cut it out of their nets before it died. It is unclear whether this was possible.

    Woolly mammoths are occasionally found in arctic regions still frozen and intact. Invariably they are also eaten. Northern Exposure even included this in an episode.

  13. best beloved:

    “But while the Whale had been swimming, the Mariner, who was indeed a person of infinite-resource-and-sagacity, had taken his jack-knife and cut up the raft into a little square grating all running criss-cross, and he had tied it firm with his suspenders (now, you know why you were not to forget the suspenders!), and he dragged that grating good and tight into the Whale’s throat, and there it stuck! Then he recited the following Sloka, which, as you have not heard it, I will now proceed to relate–

    By means of a grating
    I have stopped your ating.

    For the Mariner he was also an Hi-ber-ni-an. And he stepped out on the shingle, and went home to his mother, who had given him leave to trail his toes in the water; and he married and lived happily ever afterward. So did the Whale. But from that day on, the grating in his throat, which he could neither cough up nor swallow down, prevented him eating anything except very, very small fish; and that is the reason why whales nowadays never eat men or boys or little girls.

    The small ‘Stute Fish went and hid himself in the mud under the Door-sills of the Equator. He was afraid that the Whale might be angry with him. “

  14. I could be wrong, but the megamouth shark is not on any endangered species list.

    Rare != Endangered

  15. @ vennblender:

    You’re just as bad, wringing your hands over someone else’s disgust. Someone needs to explain irony to the Universe already.

    Me? I think it’s a shame that the shark was killed, but I agree that to eat it once it’s dead seems better than killing it for food. Oh, wait. It wouldn’t have died if they’d cut it free of the nets in time, or not went looking for it at all. Still, shark meat is pretty tasty, and if any of you actually believe that the human race is going to be around in a thousand years, think again.

    Cold fusion, time-consuming wormholes, other unpredictable cosmic events, airborne viruses, bioterrorism, nuclear war, ensuing pandemonium, super-hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanic activity like we’ve not seen since prehistory, cataclysmic polar shifts, reptilian aliens, yetis, Cthulhu, Rodan, Siva, Quetzalcoatl. Hang on to your socks. 2012 is the new Travis Bickle.

  16. If the WWF wanted the dead shark (though I can’t imagine why), they could have bought it from the fishermen. What should they have done? Let it rot?

  17. they would have wanted it for a specimen. Even small tissue samples can be useful. I imagine they would have offered some money for it but it’s possible the fishermen wanted to make their own point about their livelihood.

    It’s not always so that the people closest to an animal know it best. I once embarrassed a senior fisherman in Japan by innocently pointing out that what he though were two species (for sixty years of fishing) was actually juvenile and adult colour phases of the same fish.

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