Sunday, 29 August 2010

Fin-printing will Help Track Sharks - Times Live

photo credit Alison Kock

Great white sharks, although they seem scary, really aren't that bad. As a species, they really aren't that interested in us, and most attacks can be attributed to the mistaken identity of a human for a delicious seal. As far as I'm concerned, they deserve a break.

Alison Kock seems to agree. She spends her time chasing great whites up and down the South African coast, and is working on a "fin-printing" project to help save the sharks, which are vulnerable to extinction.

"She and a worldwide team of researchers are creating a massive photo library of great white fins - each one unique, like human fingerprints - to learn more about shark movements and population size."

A computer program recognizes fins to make monitoring the shark population simpler. The photos can be used much like fingerprints to identify individuals.

Full article here (Times Live)

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