Marine Biology

, 166:150 | Cite as

Acoustic and conventional tagging support the growth patterns of grey nurse sharks and reveal their large-scale displacements in the west coast of Australia

  • Sarah Jakobs
  • Matias BracciniEmail author
Short Note


The grey nurse shark, Carcharias taurus, is a globally vulnerable coastal species with aggregatory behaviour and low productivity, making it highly susceptible to overfishing. Little is known on the biology and movement for the population along the west coast of Australia. Here we use acoustic telemetry to show that C. taurus can undertake large-scale movements and potentially capitalise on seasonal prey aggregations. Conventional tagging provided evidence to support the growth parameter values used to represent the species’ growth dynamics and considerably extended the species’ maximum observed age. As maximum age is a proxy for productivity, our findings directly inform the recovery plan currently in place for Australian C. taurus.



We are greatly thankful to the recreational and commercial fishers and DPIRD staff who allowed the collection of movement and growth data, in particular to J. Dennis who reported and released the male shark at liberty for 8098 days.


Financial support was provided by the Fisheries Research Corporation Project No. 2010/003 and logistical support for the project was provided by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Government of Western Australia.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Human and animal rights statement

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. All sharks were sampled by Departmental staff under scientific exemptions from the Fish Resources Management Act (1994).

Supplementary material

227_2019_3594_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (454 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 456 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of CologneCologneGermany
  2. 2.Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development of Western AustraliaNorth BeachAustralia

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