Large-scale migration of a school shark, Galeorhinus galeus , in the Southwestern Atlantic

Knowledge of the spatial and temporal distribution patterns of chondrichthyans is critical for their effective management. In this study we report and analyze a large-scale latitudinal migration (~ 1,425 km) of a female school shark in the Southwestern Atlantic shelf where it is currently classified as Critically Endangered. During the austral summer (February 15, 2015), ninety-four school sharks were captured (75 females and 19 males) and tagged with fin tags in Nuevo Gulf (~ 42°43’S, 64°53’W, Argentina). A female of 112 cm total length was recaptured in Uruguayan shelf waters in the austral winter (August 17, 2015). This long displacement represents the first direct evidence to support Vooren and Lucifora’s hypothesis of a single transnational population of Galeorhinus galeus in the Southwestern Atlantic. The good agreement found between the school shark habitat conditions (salinity 33-34, temperature 12-17°C) and the warmer member of Subantarctic Shelf Waters suggests that the seasonal variation in school shark abundance within this region could be related to water masses movements

Palabras clave
Distribution pattern
Habitat preference
Shelf water