Market surveys of elasmobranch fisheries resources in the Tun Mustapha Park, Sabah, Malaysia


by: Nadine S. Mopilin and B. Mabel Manjaji-Matsumoto


Tun Mustapha Park is a unique, multiple use, marine managed area located in the northern part of Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Elasmobranchs (sharks and rays) are one of the fisheries resources in this area, as elsewhere in Sabah. They are caught by both commercial and artisanal fishers. In this study, a total of 40 species of elasmobranchs comprising 17 sharks and 23 rays were recorded. A few of them were recorded in high abundance (more than 5 but less than 30 individuals per sighting). These were Oriental Bluespotted Maskray (Neotrygon orientalis), Bluespotted Fantail Ray (Taeniura lymma), Sharpnose Whipray (Maculabatis macrura), Whitespotted Whipray (Maculabatis gerrardi), Milk Shark (Rhizoprionodon acutus) and Spot-tail Shark (Carcharhinus sorrah). There are concerns about the status of the elasmobranch populations, which are generally dwindling globally.

Keywords: biodiversity, abundance, sharks and rays, elasmobranch, fisheries