Species Profile and Threats Database

For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Listed as Vulnerable as Carcharodon carcharias
Listed migratory - Bonn as Carcharodon carcharias
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, this species had a recovery plan in force at the time the legislation provided for the Minister to decide whether or not to have a recovery plan (19/2/2007).
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans Recovery Plan for the White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2013i) [Recovery Plan] as Carcharodon carcharias.
Policy Statements and Guidelines Survey guidelines for Australia's threatened fish. EPBC Act survey guidelines 6.4 (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2011i) [Admin Guideline].
Marine bioregional plan for the Temperate East Marine Region (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012aa) [Admin Guideline].
Marine bioregional plan for the North-west Marine Region (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012y) [Admin Guideline].
Marine bioregional plan for the South-west Marine Region (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012z) [Admin Guideline].
Information Sheets White Shark Issues Paper (Department of the Enviroment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA), 2009) [Information Sheet].
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Declaration under s178, s181, and s183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - List of threatened species, List of threatened ecological communities and List of threatening processes (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000) [Legislative Instrument] as Carcharodon carcharias.
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - Amendment to the List of Migratory Species (03/12/2002) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2002d) [Legislative Instrument] as Carcharodon carcharias.
State Government
    Documents and Websites
NSW:Vulnerable species - Great white shark (NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI), 2005i) [Internet].
TAS:Carcharodon carcharias (Great White Shark): Species Management Profile for Tasmania's Threatened Species Link (Threatened Species Section (TSS), 2014vv) [State Action Plan].
VIC:Flora and Fauna Guarantee Action Statement 185 - Great White Shark Carcharodon carcharias (Holliday, I., 2003) [State Action Plan].
State Listing Status
TAS: Listed as Vulnerable (Threatened Species Protection Act 1995 (Tasmania): September 2012 list) as Carcharodon carcharias
VIC: Listed as Threatened (Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 (Victoria): February 2014 list) as Carcharodon carcharias
WA: Listed as Vulnerable (Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 (Western Australia): September 2013 list) as Carcharodon carcharias
Non-statutory Listing Status
IUCN: Listed as Vulnerable (Global Status: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: 2013.1 list)
VIC: Listed as Vulnerable (Advisory List of Threatened Vertebrate Fauna in Victoria: 2013 list)
Scientific name Carcharodon carcharias [64470]
Family Lamnidae:Lamniformes:Chondrichthyes:Chordata:Animalia
Species author (Linnaeus, 1758)
Infraspecies author  
Other names Carcharadon carcharias [84744]
Distribution map Species Distribution Map

This is an indicative distribution map of the present distribution of the species based on best available knowledge. See map caveat for more information.

Illustrations Google Images

Queensland: Protected under Schedule 78 (1), Fisheries Act 1994.

South Australia: Protected under Schedule 42, Fisheries Act 1982.

Tasmania: Protected under Schedule 135(2), Threatened Species Protection Act 1995, Section 135(2), Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995 and declared vulnerable under the Fisheries (General and Fees) Regulations 1996.

Victoria: Protected under Schedule 71, Fisheries Act 1995.

Western Australia: Protected under Schedule 46 of the Fisheries Resources Management Act 1994.

International: Listed under Appendix II of CITES.

Scientific name: Carcharodon carcharias

Common name: Great White Shark

Other names: White Pointer, White Shark, White Death

The Great White Shark is a member of the Lamnidae family (mackerel sharks) and as such is a close relative of the Mako (Isurus spp.) and Porbeagle (Lamna nasus) sharks (Last & Stevens 2009). It has a moderately stout, torpedo-shaped body, coloured blue-grey to grey-brown or bronze on the upper surface and white below. The snout is relatively short and bluntly conical, the teeth large, erect, triangular and serrated (Last & Stevens 2009). The mouth extends beyond the eyes. The Great White Shark is a large apex predator that grows to at least 6 m in length and can weigh up to 3000 kg (Last & Stevens 2009; Mollet & Cailliet 1996). Reports of sharks reaching 7 m in length (near Kangaroo Island, South Australia) have not been verified (Mollet & Cailliet 1996).

Great White Sharks are active, fast-swimming harks that have countercurrent heat-exchangers in their circulatory system which allow them to maintain a body temperature up to 14 °C above that of the surrounding seawater. This enables individuals to tolerate a wide range of temperatures (Goldman 1997).

In Australia, Great White Sharks have been recorded from central Queensland around the south coast to north-west Western Australia, but may occur further north on both coasts (Bonfil et al. 2005; Bruce et al. 2006; Last & Stevens 2009; Paterson 1990). It has been sighted in all coastal areas except in the Northern Territory. The northern-most Queensland record is Mackay (Paterson 1990). Although capable of crossing ocean basins, the species is typically found from close inshore habitats (e.g. rocky reefs and shallow coastal bays) to the outer continental shelf and slope areas. Within Australian waters, the majority of recorded great white shark movements occur between the coast and the 100 metre depth contour. Both adults and juveniles have been recorded diving to depths of 1000 metres (Bruce et al. 2006; Bruce & Bradford 2008).

Great White Sharks are widely, but not evenly, distributed in Australian waters. Areas where observations are more frequent include waters in and around some Fur Seal and Sea Lion colonies such as the Neptune Islands (South Australia); areas of the Great Australian Bight as well as the Recherche Archipelago and the islands off the lower west coast of Western Australia (Environment Australia 2002g; Malcolm et al. 2001). Juveniles appear to aggregate seasonally in certain key areas including the 90 Mile Beach area of eastern Victoria and the coastal region between Newcastle and Forster in NSW (Bruce & Bradford 2008). Other areas, such as the Portland region of western Victoria and the coast off the Goolwa region of South Australia, are also reportedly visited by juvenile Great White Sharks.

Most research on Great White Sharks has been conducted in and around the waters off South Australia, particularly at the Neptune Islands and Dangerous Reef (Bruce 1992, Bruce et al. 2005; Bruce et al. 2005b; Bruce et al. 2006; Robbins 2007). Research has also been conducted along the mid-north NSW coast (Bruce & Bradford 2008).

Commonwealth south-east marine bioregion

The Great White Shark moves seasonally along the south and east Australian coasts, moving northerly along the coast during autumn and winter and returnging to southern Australian waters by early summer (Bruce et al. 2006).

The Great White Shark is widely, but sparsely, found in all seas including cold temperate waters in both hemispheres. It is most frequently observed and captured in coastal temperate and subtropical regions such as the north-western Atlantic, the Mediterranean Sea, off South Africa, South Australia, New Zealand and the north-eastern Pacific. It has also been observed in tropical areas such as the Coral Sea, Papua New Guinea, the central Pacific, northern Brazil and the tropical south-west Indian Ocean (Bruce 2008).

Great White Sharks were considered to have a largely coastal distribution but recent research suggests that individuals may also spend significant time in the open ocean (Bruce 2008).

The Great White Shark is considered uncommon to rare compared to most other large sharks (CITES 2004). The size of global populations and/or sub-populations are not able to be determined due to relatively poor data availability. Springer (1963, cited in CITES 2004)) and Baum and colleagues (2003, cited in CITES 2004) suggest that 0.03% to 0.5% of sharks caught in commercial fisheries are Great White Sharks. Cliff and colleagues (1996) estimated there were around 1300 Great White Sharks off the South African coast in their tagging studies conducted between 1989 and 1993 while Strong and colleagues (1996) have estimated that there could be approximately 200 Great White Sharks at Dangerous Reef in South Australia (in an area of approximately 260 km²).

The Great White Shark is most abundant near pinniped (Northern Elephant Seals or Sea-Lions) colonies along the central Californian coast, the shelf waters of the mid-Atlantic Bight, the Great Australian Bight, and the Cape and KwaZulu-Natal provinces of South Africa (Fergusson 1996 cited in CITES 2004).

Research into the distribution, biology and behaviour of the Great White Shark has been undertaken in Australia. Estimates of population size and nature has largely been based on analysis of game-fishing catch data, bycatch data and capture rates in beach shark nets.

Most survey work is associated with tagging to study the movement of Great White Sharks.

Around 480 Great White Sharks have been tagged with conventional tags between January 1974 and November 2006, most in Neptune Islands and Dangerous Reef, South Australia. Distances travelled ranged from 2–3800 km and time between tagging and re-capture (for 12 sharks) was 0–2200 days. Two tagged Sharks were more than 3500 km away, including one female tagged at the Neptune Islands that was caught by a professional shark fisher in New Zealand (CMAR 2007).

Thirteen Great White Sharks have been tagged with archival tags since August 1999. A 3 m female shark fitted with an archival tag at North Neptune Island, South Australia, on 21 August 1999 was captured on 2 November 1999 in the northern section of the Great Australian Bight, South Australia, some 600 km from where it was tagged. The tag was retrieved and yielded date, time, depth, water temperature and light levels every four minutes (CMAR 2007).

Eleven Great White Sharks have been tracked with satellite tags since March 2000. In March 2000 and 2001, two juvenile Great White Sharks, a 1.8 m female named 'Heather' and a 2.4 m male named 'Neale', were captured near Corner Inlet, Victoria (CMAR 2007). During Heather's 49-day track, she covered some 880 km, transmitting 5–10 km from the coast, then moving to 20–30 km from the coast between Cape Howe and Bermagui, NSW. The male Shark, Neale, also swam back and forth along a 75–100 km stretch of the Victorian coast centred on the region where he was tagged. He then left the area, initially heading north-east on a similar track to the first Shark, before turning offshore then heading south across Bass Strait. He travelled down the east coast of Tasmania to Bicheno then returned to Bass Strait and Corner Inlet before following an almost identical track to Heather along the coast to NSW. Neale covered 2946 km during the 129-day track (CMAR 2007).

A 3.6 m male nicknamed 'Bruce' was tagged at North Neptune Island in March 2004. He covered more than 6000 km during the eight month period in which he was tracked (CMAR 2007).

Study into Great White Shark populations is very difficult (Cailliet 1996) given the uncertainty about their movements, the uncertainty about rates of emigration and immigration from certain areas and the difficulty in estimating the rates of natural or fishing mortality. Accurate population assessments are not yet possible for any region (Bruce 2008). At the time of its nomination for listing as a protected species in 1996, it was proposed that the Australian population numbered less than 10 000 mature individuals (EA 1996). The population status in Australia, and globally, is, however, poorly known owing to a lack of robust abundance indicators. Quantitative stock assessments are not possible (Bruce 2008).

The Great White Shark is, however, uncommon compared to other sharks and evidence (from game fishing, bycatch, netting or from observational data) indicates a declining global population. Evidence suggests that the population may have declined by at least 20% over the last three generations and, in some areas, the species is considered to have declined even more substantially over the same period (CITES 2004).

The high variability between years in captures, sightings and other forms of interactions with medium to large Great White Sharks most likely reflects shifts in distribution rather than changes in population size (Bruce 2008). Thus monitoring activity or abundance indices of Great White Sharks greater than 3.0 m has so far been unsuccessful in discerning population trends from signal noise (CSIRO unpublished data cited in Bruce 2008). Bruce (1992) provides game fishing data in South Australia between 1938 and 1990 which shows a decline in catch from the 1950s onwards - Bruce suggests that this reflects lower catch effort rather than a decline in actual numbers. Bruce (1992) does, however, provide evidence that fishing pressure had an impact on the number of smaller-sized Great White Sharks in South Australia during this period.

Bruce and colleagues (2006) suggest that Great White Sharks in eastern Australia form part of a single, highly mobile population.

The Great White Shark's population resilience or productivity is extremely low for a marine species (CITES 2004). Trends in population are also difficult to establish as there are no reliable metrics with which to compare changes in population status over time (DEWHA 2009). High levels of inter-annual variability seen in Great White Shark numbers may be a reflection of changes in distribution over years, rather than trends in total population numbers (Bruce 2008). Similiarly, changes in historical game-fishing records may reflect changes in fishing behaviours rather than total numbers of Great White Sharks (DEWHA 2009).

Summary of population trend (after CITES 2004)

Data Used
Source (as referred to in CITES 2004)
1986–2000 North-west Atlantic US pelagic long line fleet catch data. Catch per unit effort. 79% declineBaum et al. 2003
1860–1990s Adriatic Sea All known records >80% decline Soldo & Jardas 2002
1966–1993 KwaZulu Natal, South Africa Annual catch per unit effort in beach protection nets > 66% declineCliff et al. 1996
1978–1999 KwaZulu Natal, South AfricaAnnual catch per unit effort in beach protection nets >60% decline (statistically significant) Dudley 2002
1950–1999 New South Wales, Australia Annual catch per unit effort in beach protection nets >70% decline since 1950 Reid & Krogh 1992, Malcolm et al. 2001
1950–2008 New South Wales, Australia Average length of sharks caught in shark net protection nets Decline from 2.5 m to 1.5 m Green et al. 2009
1962–1998Queensland, AustraliaAnnual catch per unit effort in beach protection nets and drumlines 60–75% decline since1962 Malcolm et al. 2001
1961–1990 South-eastern Australia Capture in sports fishery relative to other large sharks. 95% decline Pepperell 1992
1980–1990 South Australia Annual game fishing catch 94% decline Presser & Allen 1995

In an analysis of historical observations of Great White Sharks in waters of the east Adriatic and Canada, McPherson and Myers (2009) conclude that it is highly likely that their numbers have been reduced so dramatically that the Great White Sharks no longer fulfil their ecological role in these waters.

Juvenile aggregation areas
Juveniles appear to aggregate seasonally in certain key areas including the 90 Mile Beach area of eastern Victoria and the coastal region between Newcastle and Forster in NSW (Bruce & Bradford 2008). Other areas such as the Portland region of western Victoria and the coast off the Goolwa region of South Australia are frequented by juvenile Great White Sharks at times (DEWHA 2009).

The Port Stephens region is a major aggregation sites off eastern Australia. Bruce and Bradford (2008) established that juvenile Great White Sharks aggregate in the area in mid-September to mid-December, moving then to Bass Strait.

Pupping areas
The locations of pupping areas in Australia are unknown (DEWHA 2009) though neonate Great White Sharks have been taken as bycatch in the western region of the Great Australian Bight and Bass Strait (CSIRO unpublished data in DEWHA 2009).

Great White Sharks can be found from close inshore around rocky reefs, surf beaches and shallow coastal bays to outer continental shelf and slope areas (Pogonoski et al. 2002 in DEWHA 2009). They also make open ocean excursions and can cross ocean basins (for instance from South Africa to the western coast of Australia and from the eastern coast of Australia to New Zealand). Great White Sharks are often found in regions with high prey density, such as pinniped colonies (DEWHA 2009).

At birth, Great White Sharks are 120–150 cm total length (TL). Lengths and estimated ages at maturity are 4.5–5.0 m and 12–17 years for females and 3.6–3.8 m and 7–9 years for males. Females reach larger sizes than males. The maximum length for females is estimated to be at least 6.0 m and longevity estimates range up to 60 years, although the latter is unverified and estimates of 40–50 years may be more reasonable (Bruce 2008).
Reproduction in Great White Sharks is poorly documented, largely because there have been few opportunities to study pregnant females (Francis 1996). In one of the more systematic examinations made, Francis (1996) undertook a detailed examination of a female shark and her aborted embryos caught at North Cape, New Zealand in the early 1990s. Francis (1996) confirmed that the reproductive mode is aplacental viviparity with embryos being nourished by oophagy - that is, embryos grow within the mother, feeding on unfertilised eggs, growing to perhaps lengths of 120–150 cm and weights of between 12 and 32 kg (Francis 1996). The gestation period may be up to 18 months with a three year reproductive cycle. Reported litter sizes range from 2 to 17 (Bruce 1992; Francis 1996; Uchida et al. 1996) with an embryonic sex ratio of 1:1 (Bruce 2008). Parturition is believed to occur in spring through to summer, based on the capture of neonates and postpartum adults (Francis 1996; Uchida et al.1996), and parturition probably occurs in many, mostly temperate, locations worldwide (Francis 1996).

Female length at maturity is about 4.5–5 m while, for males, it is likely to be around 3.5 m (Pratt 1996). Male maturity is best determined by the condition of the claspers, used to transfer sperm to to female (Prat 1996). In Pratt's study of 38 male sharks, the largest immature male was 317.5 cm TL and the smallest mature male was 379 cm TL.

Great White Sharks are naturally low in abundance, have low reproductive potential, and are believed to have low natural mortality (Bruce 2008).

Great White Sharks eat a variety of prey including finfish, other sharks and rays, marine mammals, such as seals, sea lions, dolphins and whales, as well as squid, crustaceans and seabirds. They are known to change their diet as they grow: juveniles less than 2.7 m feed primarily on fish and other sharks and rays while larger sharks (3.4 m+) feed on marine mammals (Estrada et al. 2006; Malcolm et al. 2001). The shift in diet has been attributed to such things as decreasing agility with size and changes in tooth morphology (Tricas & McCosker 1984). Energy requirements of the species may be several times higher than previous estimates, underscoring the importance of seasonal feeding around seal colonies to meet these needs (Semmens et al. 2013).

Great White Sharks often occur singly or in pairs, but can be found around food sources (such as Sea Lion (Neophoca cinerea) colonies) in feeding aggregations. Schooling does not apparently occur (Compagno 1984). A dominance hierarchy has been described, in which smaller Great White Sharks avoid larger individuals when feeding (Strong et al. pers. comm in Klimley & Anderson 1996).

Great White Sharks, of about 3 m in length and larger, frequent Fur Seal (Arctocephalus pusillus doriferus and Arctocephalus forsteri) and Australian Sea Lion colonies in Australian waters (DEWHA 2009). Pinnipeds have also been reported as the major prey item for large Great White Sharks off the western coast of North America (Klimley & Anderson 1996). Bruce and colleagues (2006) suggest that some individuals rapidly switch between periods dominated by predation centered around pinniped colonies to very different predatory strategies targeting demersal finfish or chondrichthyans in nearby habitats.

Reported sightings of large Great White Sharks (>400 cm) in the middle and upper reaches of Spencer Gulf and Gulf St Vincent, where pinnipeds do not commonly occur but dolphins are frequently sighted, suggest that dolphins may be important prey items (Bruce 1992).

Patterns of Movement
Tagging of Great White Sharks has helped establish the movement patterns of sharks and possible links between populations. Tagged Great White Sharks have travelled up to nearly 10 000 km (over a 10 year period), interspersing prolonged travel with periods of residency at preferred sites, presumably in response to the availability of prey or reproductive cues (CMAR 2007).The use of conventional, archival, satellite and PAT (pop-up archival) tags has revealed that Great White Sharks move up eastern and Western Australia on a seasonal basis (CMAR 2007). They move up the east coast in autumn–winter to areas as far north as central Queensland and then return south during spring. In the west, they move up the coast as far as North-West Cape during spring and appear to return during the summer. Those sharks moving up the west coast probably spend some time in the water of the Great Australian Bight, South Australia (CMAR 2007). Data from three PAT tags deployed in Western Australia have also recorded dives by the sharks to nearly 600 m and movements offshore of several hundred kilometres (CMAR 2007). Movements of tagged Great White Sharks are extensive, covering thousands of kilometres, and seem highly directed. After moving perhaps hundreds or thousands of kilometres, at a steady speed of about 3 km per hour, Great White Sharks may suddenly stop for periods of days to months (CMAR 2007).

In addition to seasonal movements up and down coastlines, it is now understood that Great White Sharks do undertake significant movements into the open ocean (Weng et al. 2007). Bruce and colleagues (2006) reported one shark moving from South Australia to the North Island of New Zealand. Similar seasonal movements are reported for Great White Sharks in Californian and African waters (Weng et al. 2007). Bonfil and colleagues (2005) reported a trans-oceanic migration from South Africa to western Australia and back, as well as coastal movements off the coast of South Africa and Mozambique.

Residency and site fidelity
Great White Sharks do not appear to reside permanently in one area, though can display significant site fidelity. Some sharks tagged at the Neptune Islands, off Port Lincoln in South Australia, have revisited the site at the same time of year on consecutive years (CMAR 2007). Juvenile, subadult and adult Great White Sharks combine periods of residency at a limited number of sites with movement between these sites (Bruce & Bradford 2008; Weng et al. 2007).

Three primary residency regions were identified in eastern Australia for juvenile Great White Sharks by Bruce and Bradford (2008):

  • Corner Inlet/Lakes Entrance (Victoria)
  • Stockton Beach/Hawks Nest (NSW)
  • Fraser Island (Queensland).

Juvenile Great White Sharks tagged at Stockton Beach showed significant site fidelity (Bruce & Bradford 2008). Nearly all activity was restricted to the northern half of the beach. Sharks that departed and subsequently returned did so to this same area, even after journeys of hundreds of kilometres away from the beach. At Stockton Beach, when tagged juvenile Great White Sharks departed from this area, they moved along the entire eastern Australian range north to Queensland and south to Bass Strait waters. One shark was also recorded moving to New Zealand waters (Bruce & Bradford 2008).

While natural mortality in Great White Sharks is not well understood, there are some activities that represent a threat to the population of Great White Sharks in Australia. In 1996, at the time of its nomination for protected status in Australia, it was estimated that around 500 Great White Shark mortalities occured annually due to human activities in Australian waters, 300 of which were most likely related to commercial fishing (including capture as bycatch due to accidental entanglement in fishing gear) (EA 1996). While targetted fishing by commercial or recreational fishers is no longer legal in Australia, accidental catch or bycatch, beach protection measures and illegal trade continue to cause injury and mortality to Great White Sharks in Australia. There is also some concern over possible impacts of tourism-related activity, such as shark cage viewings (DEWHA 2009).

Bycatch in commercial fisheries
Great White Sharks generally have very low resilience to fishing pressure (Green et al. 2009), though because of their overall low abundance have not been commonly targetted by commercial fisheries (CITES 2004). While protected from intentional capture from the commercial or game fishing sector within Australia, and in many other jurisdictions, the Great White Shark can be accidentally caught or injured in long-lines and in nets of professional fishers (CITES 2004). Bruce (1992) found 10% of Great White Sharks encountered in South Australian waters showed evidence of previous encounters with commercial fishing gear while Strong and colleagues (1996) found 10% of Great White Sharks observed in the Spencer Gulf, South Australia, carried short remnants of longlines and gillnets.

Quantification of injury or mortality associated with accidental interactions with commercial fishing is, however, difficult to assess (Bruce 1992). The most comprehensive study of Great White Shark mortality as a result of interactions with the commercial fishing sector estimated that approximately 165 Great White Sharks were caught per year and, of those, an estimated 92 died before they could be released (Malcolm et al. 2001). This study acknowledged that the average annual variability was probably high, and that the mortality estimate of 92 was probably an underestimate due to post-release mortality. This study was based on fisher logbooks and through phone interviews of fishers.

Information from logbooks from Commonwealth managed fisheries indicates that there were approximately 37 Great White Sharks caught between 2002–2008 of which 27 were reported as being released alive (DEWHA 2008aaaa). The Australian Fishery Management Authority (AFMA) publishes interactions that Commonwealth-managed fisheries have with Great White Sharks, with the Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery reporting capture in gillnet equipment (Johnstone 2008), the Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery-South East Trawl reporting capture in trawls (Johnstone 2008a) and the Eastern Tuna and Billfish Fisheries reporting hooking of Great White Sharks (Johnstone 2007).

Only South Australia and Western Australia reported interactions from within their state managed fisheries - of those, Western Australia reported 10 interactions in 2007–2008 while South Australia reported five interactions in 2007–2008 (DEWHA 2008aaaa).

Other fisheries known to interact (Environment Australia 2002g) with Great White Sharks include the :

  • snapper fisheries in Victoria and the Gulf of St Vincent and Spencer Gulf in South Australia
  • tuna farming industry (Great White Sharks have been killed after entering cages or harassing stock during capture and transport operations)
  • Tasmanian Scalefish Fishery.

Historic Game Fishing
While the Great White Shark now has protected status within its distribution in Australia, it was once targeted by game or trophy fishers who particularly sought out large mature specimens (CITES 2004). During 1961–1990, a total of 7879 records of shark catches were made from the 10 game fishing clubs in south-eastern Australia (Rose 2001). Of these, 2% (or some 157) of those sharks were Great White Sharks. The Game Fishing Association of South Australia recorded a peak of Great White Shark captures in the 1950s to less than one per year in the 1990s (Bruce 1992). Rose (2001) details the game fishing records in NSW, where catches of Great White Shark averaged less than eight per year during 1961–1980 then dropped significantly to four sharks caught between 1981–90 and 12 captured between 1991–1999. After 1997, Great White Sharks were no longer targeted (Chan 2001 in Rose 2001).

Numbers of shark captured and landed in NSW from game fishing club records 1989–1999 (Chan 2001 in Rose 2001)

Reported common name 1989/9090/91 91/9292/9393/9494/95 95/96 96/9797/9898/99Total per species
Great White Shark01302 5200013

Chan (2001, in Rose 2001) observed that from the mid 1980s, the practice of tagging and release of most shark species overtook the practice of landing and killing sharks in game fishing off the coast of NSW, possibly as a result of increased conservation concern for sharks.

Beach meshing and baiting for human protection

NSW introduced netting along beaches in the 1930s to protect bathers from shark attack. There are 51 ocean beaches from Wollongong to Newcastle netted between 1 September and 30 April each year using bottom-set mesh nets (Green et al. 2009). The shark meshing program is identified as a Key Threatening Process under both the Fisheries Management Act 1994 and the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 in recognition of its impacts on threatened species. The NSW meshing program is now jointly managed under both legislations to address concerns about impact on threatened (such as the Great White Shark of the critically endangered Grey Nurse Shark (Carcharias taurus (east coast population)) or non-target species such as marine turtles (Green et al. 2009).

Some 577 Great White Sharks were captured in shark meshing programs in NSW between 1950/51 and 2007/08 (Green et al. 2009). Between 1990/91–2007/08 there was an average of approximately six Great White Sharks caught in the NSW Shark Meshing Program each year. The sex ratio of caught sharks is effectively 1:1 and not biased toward females (Green et al. 2009). Few large, mature, female Great White Sharks are caught in this netting program, with the annual mean length of shark caught since 1950/51–2007/08 declining from 2.5 m to 1.75 m. Large and/or dangerous sharks caught in the nets used to be euthanased and disposed of at sea, but now all sharks found alive in the nets, or with a reasonable chance of recovery from injuries, are released alive (Green et al. 2009). Mortality is relatively high in Great Whites caught in the nets, and only 17 of the 100 Great White Sharks caught between 1990–91and 2007–08 survived entanglement and were subsequently released alive (Green et al. 2009).

September and October are the peak months for capture of Great White Sharks in the neshing program, with 57% of all Great Whites caught between 1990–91 and 2007/08 being caught in those two months. Of the 57 Great Whites caught in the months of September and October from 1990–2008 15 were caught at Stockton Beach, 18 at other beaches in the Newcastle region, and 16 on the Central Coast. Nine of the 16 Great White Sharks from the Central Coast were caught in September in each of the three seasons from 2005–06–2007–08 (Green et al. 2009).

The impact that beach meshing may have on the population dynamics of Great White Sharks may be informed by the frequency of capture at beaches identified as important areas for juvenile Great White Sharks. For instance, Stockton Beach and Wattamolla, Redhead and Catherine Hill Bay beaches are all areas frequented by juvenile Great White Sharks during their northward, autumn-winter movements not long after birth in the Great Australian Bight (Bruce et al. 2006). The estimated birth size of Great White Sharks is between 1.2–1.5 m (Francis 1996). Of the 19 sharks caught at Stockton since 1990–91, 15 were under 2 m in length, the smallest of which was 1.3 m long. The smallest Great White Shark caught since 1990–91 was 1.1 m at Catherine Hill Bay (Green et al. 2009).

Table 1: Great White Shark entanglements by NSW region and decade between 1950 and 2008 (Green et al. 2009)

first 30 years
28 years
Newcastle 87 103 92 282 30 24 25 79 361
Central Coast na na na na 4 1010 24 24
Sydney North 50 2 17 69 13 4 5 22 91
Sydney South 13 1 37 51 9 5 15 29 80
Illawarra 1 0 2 3 3 1 1 58
Unspecified 001313000013
Total 151106161418594456159577

Queensland's Shark Control Program (QSCP) began in 1962 and is implemented by the Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries (Qld DPI&F 2006). The program, which operates along some 1720 km of beach from the Gold Coast to Cairns, uses both nets and baited drumlines. There are 6.5 km of mesh nets and 344 drumlines to protect 84 beaches. Nets and drumlines are in place all year round (Green et al. 2009), reflecting the year round bathing habits. Nets are 186 m in length and have a depth of 6 m and a mesh size of 500 mm. Drumlines catch actively feeding sharks with baited hooks suspended from a large plastic float, which in turn is anchored to the sea bed, The hook is baited every other day with fresh sea mullet, which is a naturally occurring food source for sharks (Qld DPI&F 2006).

Between 1985–1986 and 2008–09, some 18 900 sharks were caught in the Queensland Shark Protection Program (Qld OESR 2009). Of these, 214 (or approximately 1%) were Great White Sharks. Between 1998–99 and 2008–09, there was an average of just under seven Great White Sharks caught a year. This compares to an average of nearly 13 per year in the period between 1988–89 and 1998–99 (Qld OESR 2009). During the first 20 years of beach meshing in Queensland an average of about 20 Great White Sharks per year were caught by the nets (Environment Australia 2002g). Paterson (1990) observed that nearly 90% of Great White Shark captures occurred in southern Queensland off the Gold and Sunshine Coasts. The peak in captures also occurred when water temperatures were low (Paterson 1990).

International illegal trade
Despite the protection provided to Great White Sharks in Australia and overseas, markets exist at both the national and international levels for a variety of Great White Shark products, particularly jaws and teeth (CITES 2004). High demand from collectors in many countries combined with high prices provide strong incentive for fishermen and traders to supply this market, perhaps resulting in the killing and trade of sharks that might otherwise have been released alive (Government of Australia 2004). There is evidence of a thriving international trade in jaws and teeth on the internet (Anon. 2004 in CITES 2004). In a supporting document to the nomination of the Great White Shark under Appendices II of CITES, the Australian Government (Government of Australia 2004) documented the following "one day snapshot" of their internet search results:

  • At least two sets of great white shark jaws, one offered at US$12 500, the other at US$8000. In 2003, a pair of Great White Shark jaws was offered for auction in New Zealand with a minimum price of $20,000.
  • A simple search found hundreds of great white shark teeth available, excluding fossil teeth, with individual specimens priced as high as US$625.
  • In most instances, the offering parties indicate a willingness to ship their products internationally.

In their 2005 genetic profiling of shark fins, Shivji and colleagues demonstrated conclusively that illegal trade of Great White Shark fins was also occurring. Their study also concluded that there may be a valued (possibly specialised) market for Great White Shark fins and that it was highly likely that it had high product value for the traders to risk purchase and commerce in this. The discovery of fins from mostly small Great White Sharks also suggests that there may also be a market for Great White Shark meat, and not just fins (Shivji et al. 2005).

Illegal trade in Australia
Despite being protected under various state and Commonwealth regulations, there is thought to be a continuing trade in Australia of Great White Shark jaws (McAuley & Thomas 2005). There is soliciting of Great White Shark parts in Australian fishing magazines, pointing toward illegal trade within Australia (CITES 2004). Shark finning is banned in Commonwealth waters and similar arrangements exist in state and territory fisheries. Measures are also in place to encourage the full utilisation of landed sharks. However, due to the high value of some shark fins, illegal finning at sea remains a concern in some fisheries (Bensley et al. 2010). While illegal fishing of sharks does occur in Australian waters, particularly by foreign fishermen in northern waters, the distribution of the Australian population of the Great White Shark does not extend into the northern waters of the Exclusive Economic Zone. As such illegal foreign fishing in Australian waters is not regarded as a threat to this species (Lack & Sant 2008).

Tourism activities
Commercial tourist operations were established in the 1970s for the viewing of Great White Sharks in Spencer Gulf, South Australian waters. By the mid-1990s there were five charter companies operating out of Port Lincoln, Kangaroo Island and Adelaide, South Australia. Charters predominantly targeted New Zealand fur seal and Australian sea lion colonies at the Pages Islands, Dangerous Reef, North and South Neptune Islands and the Sir Joseph Banks Group (DEH 2005b). As the industry grew, so too did concern about possible impacts (for instance on possible changes to residency times and behaviours). Substantial observations and research have been undertaken around the shark viewing and berleying activities at Neptune Island and it appears that shark cage diving has had little deomnostrated impact on the behaviour of Great White Sharks over the last few decades (DEWHA 2009). While the industry offers significant research and public education opportunities, there remains some caution about possible impacts, particularly if there is an increase in the number of operators and the number of days in which berleying is used and if new areas for operations are used (DEWHA 2009).

South Africa was the first country to provide protection for the Great White Shark (in 1991) and was followed by the provision of varying degrees of protection in federal and state waters by the United States of America in 1997, Australia in 1999 and Malta in 2000. In 2007, Great White Sharks became protected in New Zealand and the taking of Great White Sharks by New Zealand fishing vessels on the High Seas was also prohibited. Given that Great White Sharks in Australia and New Zealand are thought to comprise a single stock, complementary protective arrangements in New Zealand will enhance those previously implemented in Australia (DEWHA 2009).

An International Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks (IPOA-Sharks) was adopted by the UN FAO Committee on Fisheries in 1999. Fourteen member countries have subsequently prepared national action plans, including Australia (Bensley et al. 2009). Australia was successful in nominating the Great White Shark under Appendices III in 2001 and subsequently to Appendices II of CITES in 2004. Australia also nominated the Great White Shark for lising under Appendices I and II of the Convention on Migratory Species in 2002 (Government of Australia 2002).

Fishing regulation
Great White Sharks were first protected in Tasmanian waters in 1996 with full protection across all Australian waters achieved by 1998 (Malcolm et al. 2001 in Bruce & Bamford 2008) and protection in Commonwealth waters in 1999. Australia produced the Australian National Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks (The Shark Advisory Group & Lack 2004) following an assessment in 2002 (Rose & The Shark Advisory Group 2002). While much of the Plan deals with species of sharks targetted by fisheries, it also aims to reduce incidental and accidental take of protected shark species.

Both Commonwealth and state governments manage fisheries in Australia and each are subject to a mix of legislative, regulatory and policy instruments that contribute to reducing the threat that bycatch poses to Great White Sharks. The Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) shares responsibility for managing some fisheries with the States and Northern Territory. AFMA generally manages deeper water finfish and tuna species. AFMA is the Commonwealth agency responsible for implementing the Fisheries Management Act 1991 (FMA) and managing Commonwealth fisheries. The EPBC Act broadly requires that actions taken when fishing do not have a significant impact on the Commonwealth marine environment and its biodiversity, including protected species such as marine turtles. All Commonwealth fisheries have to be assessed and accredited under Part 13 and 13A of the EPBC Act. Other more specific actions are controlled through recovery plans, wildlife conservation plans and threat abatement plans made under the EPBC Act as a result of a protected species listing or type of fishing activity being listed.

Relevant Commonwealth policies and programs include the Guidelines for the Ecologically Sustainable Management of Fisheries 2007 and AFMA's Bycatch and Discard Program. The Australian Government released the Commonwealth Policy on Fisheries Bycatch in 2000 to guide Commonwealth fisheries in the pursuit of legislative objectives relating to non-target species and the broader marine environment. AFMA (2008) established a Bycatch and Discarding Implementation Strategy to provide additional resources and direction for pursuing policy and legislative objectives in relation to bycatch and discarding.

National Recovery Plan
The first national recovery plan White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) Recovery Plan (Environment Austalia 2002g) was produced in 2002 and reviewed in 2008 (DEWHA 2008aaaa). While the Review concluded that many of the objectives had been addressed, there was still the outstanding difficulty in determining what effect the recovery actions were having on the status of the population. There is an inherent difficulty in assessing populations and trends in populations and as such the effectiveness of recovery and protection activities are difficult to measure. The number of instances of Geat White Shark mortality appears to be decreasing. This decrease is difficult to interpret in the absence of comprehensive fisheries-independent data. Establishing ongoing Great White Shark mortality due to interactions with commercial fishing operations remains a priority (DEWHA 2008aaaa).

A draft recovery plan has been published and is open for public review in 2010. A National Shark Recovery Group assists DEWHA with the design and implementation of recovery plans for EPBC Act listed shark species. Membership of the NSRG comprises Commonwealth and state government agencies, Indigenous representation, commercial fishing industry, conservation and recreational sector representatives and scientific experts (Bensley et al. 2009).

Objectives of the current draft Recovery Plan (DEWHA 2010) include:

  • Develop and apply quantitative measures to assess the recovery of Great White Sharks in Australian waters.
  • Monitor and reduce the impact of commercial fishing, including aquaculture, on Great White Sharks.
  • Monitor the impact of recreational fishing on Great White Sharks.
  • Monitor and reduce the impact of shark control activities on Great White Sharks.
  • nvestigate and manage the impact of tourism on Great White Sharks.
  • Investigate, monitor and reduce the impact of trade in Great White Shark products.
  • Identify habitat critical to the survival of Great White Sharks and establish suitable protection of this habitat from threatening activities.
  • Continue to develop and implement research programs to support the objectives of the recovery plan.
  • Improve and promote community education and awareness in relation to Great White Sharks.
  • Encourage the development of regional partnerships to enhance the conservation and management of the Great White Shark.

Marine bioregional plans have been developed for four of Australia's marine regions - South-west, North-west, North and Temperate East. Marine Bioregional Plans will help improve the way decisions are made under the EPBC Act, particularly in relation to the protection of marine biodiversity and the sustainable use of our oceans and their resources by our marine-based industries. Marine Bioregional Plans improve our understanding of Australia's oceans by presenting a consolidated picture of the biophysical characteristics and diversity of marine life. They describe the marine environment and conservation values of each marine region, set out broad biodiversity objectives, identify regional priorities and outline strategies and actions to address these priorities. Click here for more information about marine bioregional plans.

The White Shark has been identified as a conservation value in the South-west (DSEWPaC 2012z), North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) and Temperate East (DSEWPaC 2012aa) marine regions.See Schedule 2 of the South-west Marine Bioregional Plan (DSEWPaC 2012z) and the Temperate East Marine Bioregional Plan (DSEWPaC 2012aa) for regional advice. Maps of Biologically Important Areas have been developed for White Shark in the South-west (DSEWPaC 2012z) and Temperate East (DSEWPaC 2012aa) marine regions and may provide additional relevant information. Go to the conservation values atlas to view the locations of these Biologically Important Areas. The "species group report card - sharks" for the Temperate East (DSEWPaC 2012aa) and South-west (DSEWPaC 2012z) marine regions and the "species group report card - sharks and sawfishes" for the North-west (DSEWPaC 2012y) Marine Region provide additional information.

The following documents are relevant to the management of the Great White Shark:

  • White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) Recovery Plan (Environment Australia (2002g)
  • Review of the White Shark Recovery Plan 2002 (DEWHA 2008aaaa)
  • Draft Recovery Plan for the White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) (DEWHA 2010)
  • White Shark Issues Paper (DEWHA 2009).

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Agriculture and Aquaculture:Land clearing, habitat fragmentation and/or habitat degradation Records of National White Shark Meeting at the Sydney Aquarium, Darling Harbour, September 1996 (Anon, 1996d) [Paper File].
Personal Communication (Lane, B., 2000) [Personal Communication].
Personal Communication (Reid, D., 1999) [Personal Communication].
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Harvesting of shark body parts Carcharodon carcharias in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006eq) [Internet].
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Illegal take Carcharodon carcharias in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006eq) [Internet].
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Incidental capture and drowning by longline fishing Part 1 - Hexanchiformes to Lamniformes. FAO Species Catalogue, Vol. 4., Sharks of the World. An Annotated and Illustrated Catalogue of Sharks Known to Date. FAO Fisheries Synopsis. 4(1):1-249. (Compagno, L.J.V., 1984) [Journal].
Biological Resource Use:Fishing and Harvesting Aquatic Resources:Mortality due to capture, entanglement/drowning in nets and fishing lines Carcharodon carcharias in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006eq) [Internet].
Biological Resource Use:Gathering Terrestrial Plants:Commercial harvest Records of National White Shark Meeting at the Sydney Aquarium, Darling Harbour, September 1996 (Anon, 1996d) [Paper File].
Sharks and their Relatives. Ecology and Conservation. Occasional Paper of the IUCN Species Survival Commission No. 20 (Camhi, M., S. Fowler, J. Musick, A. Brautigam & S. Fordham, 1988) [Journal].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Human induced disturbance due to unspecified activities Carcharodon carcharias in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006eq) [Internet].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Disturbance, especially from human recreational activities and development Draft Recovery Plan for Great White Sharks, Carcharodon carcharias, in Australia (Environment Australia, 2000b) [Recovery Plan].

Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) (2008). AFMA's Program for Addressing Bycatch and Discarding on Commonwealth Fisheries:an Implementation Strategy. [Online]. Australian Government. Available from:

Bensley, N. J. Woodhams, H.M. Patterson, M. Rodgers, K. McLoughlin, I. Stobuzki & G.A. Begg (2010). 2009 Shark Assessment Report for the Australian National Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Bureau of Rural Sciences. Available from:

Bonfil, R., M. Me˙er, M.C. Scholl, R. Johnson, S. O'Brien, H. Oosthuizen, S. Swanson, D. Kotze & M. Paterson (2005). Transoceanic Migration, Spatial Dynamics, and Population Linkages of White Sharks. Science. 310:100 - 103. [Online]. Available from:

Bruce, B.D (2008). The Biology and Ecology of the White Shark, Carcharodon carcharias. In: Camhi, M.D, E.K. Pikitch & E.A Babcock, eds. Sharks of the Open Ocean. Page(s) 69-76. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing.

Bruce, B.D and R.W Bradford (2008). Spatial dynamics & habitat preferences of juvenile white sharks: identifying critical habitat and options for monitoring recruitment. Final Report to the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts - Marine Species Recovery Program. [Online]. Hobart: CSIRO. Available from:

Bruce, B.D. (1992). Preliminary observations on the biology of the white shark, Carcharodon carcharias, in South Australian Waters. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research. 43:1-11. [Online]. Available from:

Bruce, B.D., J.D. Stevens & R.W. Bradford (2005). Site Fidelity, Residence Times and Home Range Patterns of White Sharks around Pinniped Colonies. [Online]. Final Report to the Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage, Canberra. Available from:

Bruce, B.D., J.D. Stevens & R.W. Bradford (2005b). Identifying movements and habitats of white sharks and grey nurse sharks. [Online]. Available from: [Accessed: 12-May-2009].

Bruce, G.D., J.D. Stevens & H. Malcolm (2006). Movements and swimming behaiour of white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) in Australian waters. Marine Biology. 150:161-172. [Online]. Available from:

Cailliet, G.M. (1996). An Evaluation of Methodologies to Study the Population Biology of White Sharks. In: Klimley, A.P. & D.G. Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks The biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 415-416. United States of America: Academic Press Limited.

Chan, R.W.K. (2001). Biological studies on sharks caught off the coast of New South Wales. University of New South Wales. PhD Thesis. Ph.D. Thesis.

CITES (2004). Convention of International Tade in Endangeres Species of Wild Fauna and Flora - Appendix II Listing of the White Shark (revision 1). [Online]. Available from:

Cliff, G., R.P. Van Der Elst, A. Govender, T.K. Witthuhn & E.M. Bullen (1996). First estimates of mortality and population size of white sharks on the South African coast. In: Klimley, A.P. & D.G. Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks: the Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 393-400. United States of America: Academic Press.

Compagno, L.J.V. (1984). Part 1 - Hexanchiformes to Lamniformes. FAO Species Catalogue, Vol. 4., Sharks of the World. An Annotated and Illustrated Catalogue of Sharks Known to Date. FAO Fisheries Synopsis. 4(1):1-249.

CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research (CMAR) (2007). New insights into white shark movements in Australia - Information page. [Online]. viewed on 22 April 2010. Available from:

Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC) (2011i). Survey guidelines for Australia's threatened fish. EPBC Act survey guidelines 6.4 . [Online]. EPBC Act policy statement. Canberra, ACT: DSEWPAC. Available from:

Department of the Enviroment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2009). White Shark Issues Paper. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government. Available from:

Department of the Environment and Heritage (2005c). White shark Cage Diving Agreement and Operational Plan - Draft for consultation. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government.

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2010). Draft Recovery Plan for the White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias). [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government. Available from:

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2008). Review of the White Shark Recovery Plan 2002. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government. Available from:

Environment Australia (2002g). White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) Recovery Plan. [Online]. Available from:

Environment Australia (EA) (1996). Advice to the Minister for the Environment from the Endangered Species Scientific Subcommittee (ESSS) on a proposal to add a species to Schedule 1 of the Endangered Species Protection Act 1992. Canberra, ACT.

Estrada, J.A., A.N. Rice, L.J. Natanson & G.B. Skomal (2006). Use of isotopic analysis of vertebrae in reconstructing ontogenetic feeding ecology in white sharks. Ecology. 87:829-34.

Francis, M.P. (1996). Observations on a pregnant white shark with a review of reproductive biology. In: Klimley, A.P. & D.G. Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks: the Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 157-172. United States of America: Academic Press.

Goldman, K.J. (1997). Regulation of body temperature in the white shark, Carcharodon carcharias. Journal of Comparative Physiology B. Biochemical Systemic and Environmental Physiology. 167:423-429.

Government of Australia (2002). Proposal: inclusion of Carcharodon carcharias on Appendices I and II. Proposals for inclusion of species on the appendices of the Convention of Migratory Species of Wild Animals. [Online]. Available from:

Government of Australia (2004). October 2: A Single Day Snapshot of the Trade in Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) - Proposal 32, CoP13 CoP13. [Online]. CITES. Available from:

Green, M., Ganassin, C. & D.D Reid (2009). Report into the NSW Shark Meshing (Bather Protection Program) - Public Consultation Document. State of New South Wales, NSW DPI Fisheries Conservation and Aquaculture Branch.

Johnston, J. (2008). Final Protected species interaction report from AFMA logbooks for period 1 April to 30 June 2008. Protected Species Reporting for all Commonwealth Fisheries under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. [Online]. Available from:

Johnston, J. (2008a). Final Protected species interaction report from AFMA logbooks for period 1 October to 31 December 2008. Protected Species Reporting for all Commonwealth Fisheries under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. [Online]. Australian Fisheries Management Authority. Available from:

Johnstone, J. (2007). Final Protected Species interactions reported in AFMA logbooks for period 1 July - 30 September 2007. Protected Species Reporting for all Commonwealth Fisheries under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. [Online]. Australian Fisheries Management Authority. Available from:

Klimley, P.A & S.D Anderson (1996). Residency Patterns ofwhite Sharks at the South Farallon Islands, California. In: Klimley, P.A & D.G Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks The Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. United States of America: Academic Press, Inc.

Lack, M. & G. Sant (2008). Illegal, unreported and unregulated shark catch: A review of current knowledge and action. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts and TRAFFIC. Available from:

Last, P.R & J.D Stevens (2009). Sharks and Rays of Australia (Second Edition). Collingwood, Victoria: CSIRO Publishing.

Malcolm, H., B.D. Bruce & J. Stevens (2001). A Review of the Biology and Status of White Sharks in Australian Waters. Environment Australia, Canberra.

McAuley, R., K. Ho & R. Thomas (2005). Development of a DNA Database for Compliance and Mangaement of Western Australian Sharks. Final FRDC Report - Project 2003/067. [Online]. Western Australia: Fisheries Research Division, WA Fisheries and Marine Research Laboratories. Available from:

McPherson, J.M & R.A Myers (2009). How to infer population trends in sparse data: examples with opportunistic sighting records for great white sharks. Diversity and Distributions. 15:880-890. Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Mollet, H.F. & G.M. Cailliet (1996). Using Allometry to Predict Body Mass from Linear Measurements of the White Shark. In: Klimley, A.P & D.G Aimley, eds. Great White Sharks The Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 81-89. [Online]. United States of America: Academic Press. Available from:

Paterson, R.A. (1990). Effects of long-term anti-shark measures on target and non-target species in Queensland, Australia. Biological Conservation. 52:147-159.

Pratt, H.L.Jnr (1996). Reproduction in the male white shark. In: Klimley, A.P. & D.G. Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks: The Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 131-138. San Diego, C.A.: Academic Press.

Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries (Qld DPI&F) (2006). A Report on the Queensland Shark Safety Program. [Online]. The State of Queensland: Department of Primary Industires and Fisheries. Available from:

Queensland Office of Economic and Statistical Research (Qld OESR) (2009). Shark control program: Sharks caught by type, Queensland, 1998-99 to 2008-09. [Online]. Available from:

Robbins, R.L. (2007). Environmental vairables affecting the sexual segregation of great white sharks Carcharodon carcharias at the Neptune Islands South Australia. Journal of Fish Biology. 70:1350-1364. [Online]. Available from:

Rose, C. (2001). Recreational Fishing in Australia. [Online]. Shark Advisory Group , Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Australia. Available from:

Rose, C. & The Shark Advisory Group (2002). Australian Shark Assessment Report for the Australian Naitonal Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. Available from:

Semmens, J.M., N.L. Payne, C. Huveneers, D.W. Sims & B.D. Bruce (2013). Feeding requirements of white sharks may be higher than originally thought. Scientific Reports. 3:No-1471. [Online]. Available from:

Shark Advisory Group & M. Lack (2004). National Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks (Shark Plan). [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. Available from: [Accessed: 16-May-2009].

Shivji, M. S., D.D. Chapman, E.K. Pikitch, & P.W. Raymond (2005). Genetic profiling illegal international trade in fins of the great white shark, Carcharodon carcharias. Conservation Genetics 6: 1035-1039. [Online]. Available from:

Strong, W.R., Jr, B.D. Bruce, D.R. Nelson & R.D. Murphy (1996). Population dynamics of white sharks in Spencer Gulf, South Australia. In: Klimley, A.P. & D.G. Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks: the Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 401-414. United States of America: Academic Press.

Tricas, T.C. & J.E. McCosker (1984). Predatory behaviour of the white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) with notes on its biology. In: Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences. 43:221-238.

Uchida, S., M. Toda, K. Teshima & K. Yano (1996). Pregnant sharks and full-term embryos from Japan. In: Klimley, A. P. & D.G. Ainley, eds. Great White Sharks: The Biology of Carcharodon carcharias. Page(s) 139-155. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Weng, K.C., A. M. Boustany, P. Pyle, S.D., Anderson, A. Brown & B.A. Block (2007). Migration and habitat of white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) in the eastern Pacific Ocean. Marine Biology. 152:877-894. [Online]. Available from:

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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Carcharodon carcharias in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: Accessed Thu, 31 Jul 2014 08:40:42 +1000.