A Costa Rican lawyer asked the Dispute Tribunal to ban the hammerhead shark fishing in the country. Walter Brenes, from the Energy Law Firm, resorted to the National System of Conservation to make his request.

In a press conference, Brenes pointed out that this kind of activity should be prohibited. After this proposal, the National System of Conservation is still evaluating the real situation of this species. Three species of hammerhead sharks live in Costa Rica.

hammerhead shark

“The institution (The National System of Conservation) is responsible for the development, planning and execution of administrative measures to protect the endangered animals in Costa Rica. Our priority are those animals protected by the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna – Brenes explained.

The lawyer asked the institution to carry out research programs and monitoring studies to know what is the current situation of these sharks.

In Costa Rica, long-line and trawl fishing are used for catching this shark. Brenes grounded his request on the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea because he thinks there is not enough information on the impact of the small and large-scale fishing on this species, for this reason, he states that a decision should be made regarding this issue as soon as possible.

“SINAC and the Costa Rican government have acted passively when it comes to addressing such an important issue like the protection of our biodiversity. It is necessary to take immediate action before the damage becomes irreversible”- he added.

Hammerhead sharks reproduce in a very limited way. Today, they are in the list of the endangered species in Costa Rica. There are other organizations looking for ways to protect this animal and regulate the trade.

Lately, the National System of Conservation has forbidden the hammerhead shark flippers exportation but trawl fishers are putting pressure to obtain the fishing license. The government came under fire for transfering such responsibility to the Costa Rican Fishing Institute.