Feb 1

We’ve asked conservation organisations around the world to nominate a species that they believe to be overlooked, underappreciated and unloved, and tell us why they think that they deserve a fair share of the limelight, this Valentine’s Day.

Each nominee’s story is featured on the Arkive blog with information on the species, what makes them so special, the conservation organisation that nominated them and how they are working to save them from extinction.

Click the ‘unloved species’ tag above to see all of the nominations and their blogs.

Once you have perused the blogs you can vote for your favourite to help get them into the top ten unloved species and get them the recognition that they truly deserve! Share your favourite with others using the #LoveSpecies hashtag on Twitter and Facebook and tell them why they should vote for them too. Voting closes on February 14th at 23:59 PST (07:59 GMT).

Join us and our conservation partners in celebrating and raising awareness for some of the world’s most unloved species this Valentine’s Day!

Species: Great hammerhead

Nominated by: Bimini sharklab

Conservation status: Endangered

Why do you love it? How can you not be intrigued by these enigmatic large sharks?! They are a seasonal treat as they only visit Bimini through the winter months, and head north during the summer. Globally, we don’t know all that much about this species and so they do have an air of mystery about them. Sleek and powerful; spending time just snorkelling in the water with them is enough to convince anyone that these beautiful sharks deserve more protection and respect!

What are the threats to the great hammerhead? These sharks are fairly large, and so are a prime target for fisherman due to the size of their fins. On top of this they are threatened by accidental bycatch, and targeted fishing for meat and oils. As a shark with low fecundity, any damage to the population will take a long time to recover.

What are you doing to save it? At the Bimini Sharklab, we collect as much data as possible to try and learn more about the great hammerhead, this can be through collecting images for Photo ID archives, using laser-photogrammetry to gain measurements on individuals, tagging with acoustic transmitters and collecting DNA and isotope samples. In 2015 we actively tracked a great hammerhead for the first time, and spent 7 hours following its movements around Bimini. All this data collectively can further our understanding of these sharks, which will then allow proper protection to be initiated.

Find out more about Bimini Sharklab and their work with the great hammerhead

Discover more cartilaginous fish species on Arkive