Elkhorn Slough Elasmobranch Project
Conservation, Protection and Advocacy
The Elkhorn Slough has historically been the site of numerous shell fisheries, hatcheries, farms and industrial developments that have affected the ever changing slough habitat which is already in flux due to highly variable tidal erosion and periodic heavy rains. Dams and dykes have also altered path of the sloughs flow and range.
Added to these influences there are significant levels of pollutants present in the sediments due to not point run off etc.
In addition to the above mentioned threats to the slough dwelling sharks and rays there have been periodic shark and ray eradication programs and/or shark angling or archery events dating back to the 1940's. As recently as 1996 there were organized events where large numbers of sportsmen armed with bows and arrows would go down to the slough and kill as many sharks and rays as they could.
While sport-fishing is encouraged in the main channel much of the sensitive areas are now protected by the ESNERR and there are
presently no organized shark killing events.