Rep. Rob Wittman (VA-1) requests $1,500,000 for:
National Shark Research Consortium/Virginia Institute of Marine Science Route 1208 Greate Road
Gloucester Point, VA 23062
The Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) Shark Research Program is the longest continuously running shark assessment program in the US. The VIMS program is part of the National Shark Research Consortium (NSRC) of four research institutions, which conducts research on sharks and related fishes in order to provide information to the National Marine Fisheries Service to better manage and conserve these important species. The NSRC has been funded by Congress as part of the NMFS budget under Highly Migratory Species.
Previous research has chronicled the serious decline worldwide of sharks and their relatives due to overfishing and habitat destruction. Some species have been listed as endangered species under the US Endangered Species Act or by the IUCN. Studies have shown that apex predators are essential to maintaining the diversity and productivity of marine ecosystems. The NSRC Highly Migratory Shark Fishery Research Program provides NOAA/NMFS with multi-regional biological research and the information necessary for effective management and conservation of shark fishery resources.
Consortium projects involve NMFS-related research activities required for assessing the status of shark stocks, managing U.S. shark fisheries, and helping our nation take the leading role in worldwide conservation and management of shark populations.