Why the Idea of Killing Sharks to Make Waters Safer Is Absurd
Author: Alastair Bland
Source: Smithsonian Magazine (blog)
July 24, 2012
"The fifth fatal shark attack in less than a year in the coastal waters of Western Australia has put local swimmers, divers and surfers on edge. Authorities have tried to catch and kill the individual before it attacks again—but their efforts may not stop there. Some officials are already suggesting that lawmakers take a 180-degree turn in shark conservation practices, lift protections from great white sharks and allow people to fish for and kill the animals again after a 14-year moratorium.
The great white shark is a protected species in much of the world and considered vulnerable and threatened in places. Once the popular target of trophy fishermen, who used rods and reels like cranes to haul in sharks as large as two tons, the great white received protection in Western Australia following the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s labeling of the species as “vulnerable.”
But Western Australia Fisheries Minister Norman Moore says he will now be lobbying to legalize sport and commercial fishing for great white sharks in the waters under his jurisdiction."
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