Ban Shark Nets in Australia
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We need to prevent the death of threatened and endangered species in shark nets!
A shark net is a submerged net placed around beaches to reduce shark attacks on swimmers. The majority of shark nets used are Gillnets which is a wall of netting that hangs in the water and captures the targeted sharks by entanglement. Shark nets do not offer complete protection but work on the principle of "fewer sharks, fewer attacks". They reduce occurrence via shark mortality. Reducing the local shark populations is believed to reduce the chance of an attack. The last century proved this principle right, with significantly less human deaths at protected beaches. Yet, it's time for a more humane way of protecting beaches.
The large mesh size of the nets is designed specifically to capture sharks and prevent their escape until eventually, they drown. This design also results in incidence of bycatch, including threatened and endangered species like sea turtles, dugongs, dolphins and whales. Alternatives such as drone technology, surf lifesaving patrols, public education on shark behaviour, radio signals, sonar technology, buoys that emit sounds and electric nets should be considered.
Together we have reached a turning point in human history. It's not just about shark nets, it's about deciding to do the right thing for the future of our planet. Our oceans sustain life on this planet, and it's time we stand up to protect them.
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