Sharks are seemingly everywhere in the news these days. First there was last week’s the “Paddle faster, I hear Jaws music” moment” then it was the “It’s a shark, a shark, a big-a** shark!” moment a day or so later, then it was the dramatic video of an opportunistic whale shark sucking fish out a hole in a trawler’s net. Now some lawmakers in Australia want to lift that country’s ban on the hunting of great white sharks following the fifth fatal attack this year.
From this story in the UK Daily Mail:
Western Australia has called on the federal government to lift a ban on hunting great white sharks after the fifth death in its waters within a year. Fisheries Minister Norman Moore said the spate of attacks was ’cause for great alarm’ following the death of 24-year-old surfer Ben Linden, who was bitten in half by a shark on Saturday. Mr Moore said it was time to reassess population numbers and plans to write to the federal government about the great white’s protected status. Mr Linden was killed by the 15-foot-long great white near remote Wedge Island, 100 miles north of Perth.
According to the story, Australia hs an average of one fatal shark attack per year, but researchers are attributing the rise in encounters to ever-increasing numbers of humans rather than a rise in the number of sharks. What do you think: are there more sharks or more people, and what needs to be done about it?