Following yesterday’s shark attack on WA surfer Sean Pollard, who lost a hand and one arm, Sea Shepherd director Jeff Hansen has spoken out against the policy of catching and killing sharks immediately after attack, as a kind of futile revenge.

“If this is an eye for an eye sort of mentality, it’s not going to make any difference, and it’s proven through experience all over the world that culling and killing sharks does not work.”

“We have nature on a grand scale off our doorstep … unfortunately at times we get caught in the middle of that and we have these tragic incidents, but we need to learn from what has happened here.”

Hansen maintains no sharks should have been killed, and urged the Australian Government to rethink its policy.

“There is no such thing as a rogue shark, they don’t exist – they exist in Hollywood in films like Jaws and that’s it.”

While Facebook comments and forums tend to light up with public outrage at the killing of these large fish, public opinion is probably more balanced in reality, especially on surf coastlines where attacks happen, among people who actually go in the water regularly. It seems comment forums tend to favour one, trendier side of the argument (if you judged the Scottish independence referendum by social media, you think about 99% of the vote would be ‘Yes’).

One interesting take on the debate came from Taj Burrow via STAB mag recently, where he said (shark culling is) “A heated subject over here at the moment. It gets people pretty upset. First of all, I don’t think culling is the appropriate word for it. We fish everything that is in the ocean and I don’t really see why it’s any different for the great white. We rape the ocean already and because none of these creatures have ever been caught it’s out of balance. So I don’t think it should be called culling.

We fish everything else so what’s the difference


In a nutshell, do you eat fish? If so, why are you crying about the killing of two fish in WA yesterday when commercial fishing kills some 93 million tonnes of wild fish/year? Or if you prefer, 250 000 tonnes of wild ocean creatures killed yesterday alone. All so you and your crew can guzzle sushi, being sure to post it first on your wretched Instagram…

Well? Do let us know.

Wanna know more about Sea Shepherd?
Wanna know how to avoid an attack?

Read about the world’s sharkiest surf zones here.


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