Shark attack: conservation policies value sharks over human life

Shark attack: conservation policies value sharks over human life, by Fred Pawle.

Our insane shark-conservation policies have cost another life, this time a 17-year-old girl who was attacked in front of her parents and siblings.

I would like to say that this incident will be the turning point in this debate, that our politicians will finally realise we need to reduce the increasing number of aggressive, lethal sharks in our waters, but this is unlikely.

The forces against such action are deeply entrenched in all our major organisations. For example, Surf Life Saving Western Australia, where yesterday’s attack occurred, recommends six responses to sharks: research, education, surveillance, communication, preventive action (“shark barriers”, which can be built only in placid waters) and emergency response. It does not recommend the reduction of sharks, despite many fishermen in the state saying the size and abundance of large sharks, especially great whites, off WA are alarmingly high.

Researchers and academics whose careers depend upon continued funding into the behaviour and fragility of these “apex predators” long ago convinced politicians and large sections of the community that to reduce the number of sharks in our waters would be an ecological disaster. …

So it’s all about money for vested interests, while Australians die? It’s almost as if the Greens hated us and are content to let us be eaten by sharks:

The committee’s hearing in Sydney last month repeatedly heard witnesses say that surfers and other ocean users must accept the risk of entering the water. Even surfers are spouting this line these days. …

Surfrider Foundation representative Brendan Donohoe … told the committee that “there are a lot of morons around”, by which he meant there were many people who blamed governments for the shark crisis currently affecting Australia. “The idea that it is someone else’s fault is astounding to me. Everyone knows the risk, and the risk is not statistically lessened by anything we do.”

Committee member [and Green politician]… Lee Rhiannon’s concern was not reducing the increasing number of aggressive sharks in our waters, but making surfers “alert to the environment”.

This is another example of how dramatically this debate has shifted towards shark, not human, safety. Originally, the opposite was the case.

Why do we tolerate large predators in our playgrounds? Why can’t we shoot them, like we used to? This is virtue-signaling and profiting-from-government-funds gone mad.

hat-tip Stephen Neil