Silky shark (Carcharhinus falciformis)

IUCN Red List Status: Near Threatened

-       The silky shark is an open ocean distributed shark found around the world in tropical waters

-       Often found in waters of depths ~650-1650 feet (200-500 meters), and around island systems

-       In the Gulf of Mexico, this species reaches up to ~11 feet (330 cm) and can live for 22+ years

-       Silky shark reach maturity at 7-8 feet (215-246 cm)

-       Females typically have 6-12 pups every 1-2 years, with a 12-month gestation period

-       The silky shark is piscivorous, which means they feed on fish, such as mullets, sea catfish, albacore, and yellowfin tuna

-       This species is one of the top targeted and incidentally captured sharks, particularly in purse seine fisheries

-       Purse seine fisheries involves fishermen setting nets around a fish aggregating device (FAD), and drawing the bottom of the nets together to form a purse shape, therefore capturing the fish under the FAD

-       They are taken for the meat for consumption, fins for soup, skin for leather, and liver for liver oil

-       Given the highly migratory nature of this shark, and it’s exposure to pelagic fisheries, international management measures are recommended by IUCN to aid in better data collection and conservation of the silky shark