Blacktip reef shark

Marine sharks and rays ‘use’ urea to delay reproduction

Blacktip reef shark

Blacktip reef shark. Photo by Ray in Manila, Flickr.

Urea – the main component of human urine – plays an important role in the timing of maturation of sharks, rays and other cartilaginous fish.

A new study by researchers with the Sea Around Us initiative at the University of British Columbia’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries found that high urea concentrations common in cartilaginous fish, particularly oviparous marine species, allow them to mature and begin to reproduce at a larger fraction of their maximal size.

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Dr. Daniel Pauly and Dr. Rashid Sumaila have launched the Africa-UBC Oceans & Fisheries Visiting Fellows Program. Photo by Kim Bellavance, Tyler Prize.

UBC researchers launch Africa-UBC Oceans & Fisheries Visiting Fellows Program

Dr. Daniel Pauly and Dr. Rashid Sumaila have launched the Africa-UBC Oceans & Fisheries Visiting Fellows Program. Photo by Kim Bellavance, Tyler Prize.

Dr. Daniel Pauly and Dr. Rashid Sumaila have launched the Africa-UBC Oceans & Fisheries Visiting Fellows Program. Photo by Kim Bellavance, Tyler Prize.

University of British Columbia researchers Dr. Rashid Sumaila and Dr. Daniel Pauly have launched the Africa-UBC Oceans & Fisheries Visiting Fellows Program, whose goal is to inspire exceptional young African researchers to develop ocean and freshwater sustainability solutions.

The fellowship is aimed at early-career academics from sub-Saharan African universities and research institutes who are interested in engaging with leading researchers at UBC’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries to facilitate diverse, equitable, mutually beneficial research collaborations.

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