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Feds shut down shortfin mako fishing in attempt to rebuild species population

The shortfin mako shark.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
The shortfin mako shark.

The federal government is shutting down fishing of a popular species of shark to try to give the animals a chance to recover from population decline.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), shut down shortfin mako fishing today. They sharks long been prized by sports fishermen, as well as by seafood fans, who use them to make steaks. According to NOAA, in 2020, recreational anglers landed more than 1.1 million pounds of Atlantic shortfin mako shark.

NOAA says the ban on mako fishing has no set end date and will depend on the status of the species. The agency says the mako population is difficult to rebuild because the fish have slow population growth rates.

North Carolina regulationsalready prohibit the fishing of the less common longfin mako in coastal waters and three miles out into the Atlantic Ocean.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.