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New fishing rules designed to protect vulnerable shark

A shortfin mako shark emerges from the water after being caught by Eric Kelly on the Kalida during the 31st North Atlantic Monster Shark Tournament on July 14, 2017 in New Bedford, Massachusetts. The annual non-profit fishing tournament brings fishermen from all over New England in search of shortfin mako, porbeagle and common thresher sharks. (Photo by Maddie Meyer Getty Images)
Posted at 8:01 AM, May 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-03 08:03:00-04

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BOSTON (AP) — The rules for recreational shark fishermen are going to get more difficult to try to protect a vulnerable species of shark.

An arm of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission has signed off on changes to the size limits for Atlantic shortfin mako sharks in state waters. The panel says the new standards stem from an assessment of the shark's population that found it was being overfished.

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The panel says it's also making the changes to respond to a determination by the International Commission on the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas that said its member countries must reduce the catch of shortfin makos by 72 to 79 percent to stop the population from further declining.

Shortfin mako sharks are listed endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.