Work has been underway in my Department for a number of months to progress protections for the Basking shark and I’m delighted to be able to announce today that they will be finalised in the near future. Basking sharks are extraordinary creatures and they’re facing increasing pressures from a range of sources, including disturbance. This move will confer legal protections on them in the short term and enhance their protection in the longer term through the collaborative development of a Code of Conduct to support best practice in sustainable eco tourism.
The forthcoming review of the Wildlife Act, as per the Programme for Government, will also enable further consideration of aspects of protection. I’d like to thank my colleagues Minister McConalogue and Minister Coveney for their support in progressing this important work, and to the many members of the public – particularly the young children – who have been so passionate in calling for Basking shark protection.