Advances in Shark Research

Posted 30 July 2015 by NISC under Announcements & Notices • Journal: African Journal of Marine Science
Advances in Shark Research

Southern Africa, being a hotspot for shark and ray biodiversity, hosted the Sharks International 2014 conference in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, in June 2014. The conference precipitated a special issue of the African Journal of Marine Science titled Advances in Shark Research.

The conference aimed to provide a medium for the world’s leading chondrichthyan (cartilaginous fish) researchers, as well as students and early career scientists, to meet, exchange ideas, and present their most recent work and was the second in what is anticipated to be a series of such conferences to be held every four years, the first having taken place in Cairns, Australia, in 2010 and the next due to take place in Joao Passoa, Brazil in 2018.

The special issue contains 13 research articles as well as a contribution from the guest editors that provides an overview of research trends as observed through international conferences focused on chondrichthyans. 

The research articles span a number of subject areas, the best-represented being (a) the use of modern technology to elucidate movement, presence and habitat utilisation, and (b) fisheries, including those of Indonesia, collectively the world’s largest. Other topics that receive attention are taxonomy, morphometry, life history, trophic ecology, and conservation biology. 

As Dave Ebert and Kelley van Hees indicate in their taxonomic review contained in this issue, southern Africa has a particularly diverse chondrichthyan fauna, rendering it an appropriate location for an international conference of this type. The paper by Ebert and van Hees, ‘Beyond Jaws: rediscovering the ‘lost sharks’ of Southern Africa’ is available to read for free until the end of August, along with Christiansen et al., ‘Incorporating stable isotopes into a multidisciplinary framework to improve data inference and their conservation and management application’ and Everett et al., ‘Do sawfish Pristis spp. represent South Africa’s first local extirpation of marine elasmobranchs in the modern era?’ 

Read more about the African Journal of Marine Science here. 

The editorial experience was excellent: the reviewers were timely and their feedback was generative. The co-editor of the special issue was proactive about communicating information to me. In latter stages, the staff that shepherded the essay through the copy-editing stages was also very helpful and in good contact.
- Author - Eastern African Literary and Cultural Studies
The paper was wonderfully laid out and rapidly published
- Author- Ostrich: Journal of African Ornithology
Perhaps the most important change, in terms of bringing the Journal to a wider audience, has been its publishing in collaboration with the NISC (Pty) Ltd.
- Stan Pillar, Editor of the African Journal of Marine Science (1996-2013)
The review process is quick and is being done within the reasonable time. After acceptance, NISC is also quick enough to send proofs and is very efficiently publishes the accepted paper online before its print version.

- Author - Southern Forests: A Journal of Forest Science
Excellent attention by editor-in-chief; very good work of reviewers; good time for review and processing.
- Author - African Journal of Range & Forage Science