New species of sharks surface in Australian waters
Two of Australia's top experts in the field of sharks and rays, Dr Peter Last and Dr John Stevens from CSIRO's Wealth from Oceans National Research Flagship, have compiled a definitive reference on sharks, a book called Sharks and Rays of Australia. (7:24)
3 March 2009 | Updated 24 November 2011
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The book follows up the original 1994 edition, where since then, 29 additional species have been discovered in Australian seas and more than 100 species have been named and formally described.
In this podcast Dr Last and Dr Stevens discuss the newly discovered species covered in the book, and explain the general habits of sharks and rays, including why sharks attack and the defensive mechanisms employed by rays.
We also learn that the environmental landscape has changed since the first book was published in 1994, with shark and ray numbers reduced through harvesting for products such as shark fin and stingray leather.
National Research Flagships
CSIRO initiated the National Research Flagships to provide science-based solutions in response to Australia’s major research challenges and opportunities. The nine Flagships form multidisciplinary teams with industry and the research community to deliver impact and benefits for Australia.
Read more about New edition of Sharks and Rays of Australia launched (Media release 2 Mar 09).