Join The Deep, alongside aquariums all over the world as we celebrate the very first International Sawfish Day; a day dedicated to increasing awareness of these amazing animals in a bid to safeguard their future.
This annual event has been created in partnership with the Sawfish Conservation Society (SCS), the European and American Associations of Zoos and Aquariums to educate people on the threats they face as well as developing conservation strategies that will protect them.
There are only five species of sawfish and they are considered the most threatened elasmobranchs (i.e. sharks and rays) in the world due to destructive fishing practises, habitat destruction and the curio trade. The Deep is the only aquarium in the UK to house the Critically Endangered Green sawfish (as classified by the IUCN).
2017 is the first year that will see International Sawfish Day marked on October 17th – an annual, global day to mark the importance of sawfish and raise awareness of their risk of extinction. Download the resources below or join us on social media using the hashtag #INTLsawfishday and get involved to show your support!
See - A - Saw Project
In 2016 The Deep became actively involved in the Sawfish Conservation Society's aptly named See-A-Saw campaign. By locating and collecting data on antique sawfish rostra scientists at SCS, Murdoch University, Australia, and from across the UK are able to map historical sawfish populations and identify their declining populations over the years. By identifying trends and the genetic make-up of each species, effective conservation strategies can be devised and implemented for the future protection of these species across their range.
Contributions of dried rostra from researchers, fishers, aquariums, private collections and museums, including archived specimens from Hull’s Maritime and Hull and East Riding Museums, meant that data was obtained from between 400-500 different rostra throughout the UK alone.
Collected by fishers for hundreds of years, these rostra are a readily available source of valuable data. Through the use of this citizen science program data from thousands of rostra from all five sawfish species were sourced throughout the globe. The data collected will be compiled and directed for use in multiple conservation-orientated studies for sawfish.
The Deep contributed seven rostra to the study, a number of which are used within education sessions and workshops when teaching about sharks, adaptation and conservation.