Shark meat is nutritious and is used for human food. In Asian cuisines a prized gelatinous soup is made from the fins of certain species; many of the millions of sharks landed annually are taken just for the fins, and finning is now believed to threaten such species. The flesh is also sold for poultry feed, and shark oils are used in industry; shark-liver oil was formerly used as a source of vitamin A. The rough skin is used as a sandpaper called shagreen, and tanned sharkskin is a durable leather. A decrease in shark populations due to overharvesting has led a number of nations to establish shark sanctuaries in their waters.
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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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