The Leopard Shark is a beautiful fish found in the Channel Islands off California.
Harmless to humans, the leopard shark is caught by commercial and recreational fisheries for food and the aquarium trade. This species is mostly fished in the waters off California where, after a period of population decline in the 1980s, new fishing regulations in the early 1990s reduced harvesting to sustainable levels. The International Union for Conservation of Nature has assessed this species as Conservation Dependent, as local stocks may easily become overfished due to the shark's slow growth and limited migratory habits.
Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary
Filmed and Edited by Jeff Litton
All images copyright © Jeff Litton, 2009
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