Shark finning is the act of removing fins from sharks and discarding the rest of the shark. The sharks are often still alive when discarded, but without their fins. Unable to swim effectively, they sink to the bottom of the ocean and die of suffocation or are eaten by other predators. Shark finning at sea enables fishing vessels to increase profitability and increase the number of sharks harvested, as they only have to store and transport the fins, by far the most profitable part of the shark; the shark meat is bulky to transport. Some countries have banned this practice and require the whole shark to be brought back to port before removing the fins.
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