Report of the Pacific Shark Life History Expert Panel Workshop 28-30 Apr 2015
Inputs on age, growth and reproduction are often critical determinants of stock assessments, yet such data are lacking or highly uncertain for even the most common of shark species. In recognition of this WCMPFC's SC10 recommended that an expert panel be convened to review and advise on appropriate life history parameters for the fourteen WCPFC key shark species. This panel met from 28-30 April in Cairns, Australia and this paper reports the outcomes of the workshop. The panel compiled and reviewed a worldwide database of over 270 studies on blue, mako, silky, oceanic whitetip, thresher, porbeagle, hammerhead and whale shark species. Tables showing over a dozen of the most important life history parameters and their uncertainties and caveats were constructed for each species. The panel then provided guidance on the prioritization of further studies, use of the parameters in stock assessment, and overcoming difficulties in sample collection.