Learn what you can do to protect sharks/mangō.

When fishing

Carefully release any unwanted sharks and rays. Great white sharks are protected and must be released alive and unharmed.

Tag game sharks before release if possible, and return tags to the Ministry of Fisheries if you catch a tagged shark. Consider using circle hooks when targeting sharks as these tend to hook sharks in the corner of the mouth making successful live release more likely.

Follow the Ministry of Primary Industries set net Code of Practice and avoid leaving nets set unattended or over night.

Don't discard rubbish

Do not discard plastics, nylon fishing line and other types of rubbish at sea. Like whales, large filter-feeding sharks and rays can accidentally ingest these, and all species suffer from entanglement in marine debris.

Identify sharks

Great white sharks, whale sharks, basking sharks and manta rays can often be individually identified from photographs showing distinctive markings and scars.

Please report details of sightings or captures of these species to the Department of Conservation’s Marine Conservation Section ( or to 0800 DOCHOT  (0800 362 468).

Retain or photograph unusual specimens of sharks and rays and contact the Department of Conservation’s Marine Conservation Section or Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa for identification.

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