IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category Year Assessed
Data Deficient Red List Criteria Version
Rosa, R.S., Castro, A.L.F., Furtado, M., Monzini, J. & Grubbs, R.D. Reviewer/s
Kyne, P.M., Cavanagh, R.D. & Musick, J.A. (Shark Red List Authority) Justification
Despite its wide distribution in the tropical Atlantic and Eastern Pacific oceans, virtually nothing is known about the migratory behavior and connectivity (gene flow) between populations of Ginglymostoma cirratum
. Preliminary studies on its biology indicate a strong site fidelity, which renders this shark vulnerable to local extirpation from overexploitation (Compagno 2001). There is recent qualitative evidence of population declines in several areas as well as decline and fragmentation of geographic range size. The species is extremely vulnerable to coastal fisheries, being incidentally and deliberately captured both in gillnets and longlines. It is an easy target of spear fishing due to its sedentary and docile behaviour, being prized in competitions for its large body size. The nurse shark is also vulnerable to indirect coastal impacts, particularly in reef areas, which constitute its main habitat. Due to the lack of data from its range in the Eastern Pacific and Eastern Atlantic, and a need for further investigation on this species in these areas, the species is currently assessed as Data Deficient globally.
The overall assessment for the Western Atlantic subpopulation is therefore Near Threatened, this is based on its Vulnerable status off South America, the likelihood of threats to the species throughout many areas of Central America and the Caribbean, and its Least Concern status off the US and Bahamas (for further information, see assessment for Ginglymostoma cirratum
(Western Atlantic subpopulation)).