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Western Australian Shark cull

Discussion in 'Good Causes, Petitions and Solicitations' started by Wingy, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. Foxfish

    Foxfish Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Perth, Australia
    I'd consider a white pointer, tiger shark or bull shark over three metres a potential man eater.
  2. Vegan Shark

    Vegan Shark Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Okinawa
    Big difference between a "man eater" and a "potential man eater." Any large animal has the potential to harm others, be it intentionally or accidentally. A large dog on the streets might be aggressively protective of his owner and attack me if I approach too close. A person walking behind me at night might be a mugger. There being a small possibility X species will harm someone at some time does not justify indiscriminately going around and killing members of that species.

    Let's be honest: Humans do far, far worse things to sharks than sharks do to us.
    shoredivr likes this.
  3. Wingy

    Wingy Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Perth West Aust.
    Very telling when the PRO cull protest on the news has a grand total of 30 people - half of those kids with their parents - while the Anti cull protest last time numbered around 4000 people. The figure being paid to the contractor who wrongly identified the bull shark killed is $610,500 for 107 days work.

    Barnett has ''beefed up'' his own personal security yet another cost to taxpayers. Perhaps he should look at doing something about the road toll with that money - we have had far more than 7 fatal car accidents in 3 years.
    shoredivr likes this.
  4. shoredivr

    shoredivr Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Ontario
    Yes and yes.
  5. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    A difficult subject.

    1.) While humanity tends to assume human interests outweigh another species' interest, all other things being equal, here other things are highly unequal. Human usage of the ocean in these scenarios is optional recreation; shark usage is mandatory for survival and not by choice. Humans are often regarded as wildly over-populated to the detriment of other species; shark populations have been decimated already, relative to pre-human intervention conditions.

    2.) The conflict is happening in the shark's wild habitat, not human habitat, or a civilized area. Yes, humans will kill a wild lion loose in a suburban area. But if someone swims in the African Nile River and gets nailed by a Nile crocodile, do we start ranting that the croc.s have got to go?

    3.) Consider that although rare considering the numbers of each involved, bears in the U.S. do kill a few people over time. And they're going to keep on killing a few people over time as long as there are lots of free-ranging bears and humans enter their habitat. We have the capability to exterminate bears from the wild. We don't. So evidently we consider a few human lives over time an acceptable price to pay to have wild bears in nature. Individuals specifically known and believed to pose a much greater than usual threat (e.g.: known to've killed somebody, or hanging around humans) may be killed.

    4.) In the ocean, it's far harder to discriminate which individual animal was involved in an attack.

    5.) Imagine if a bear killed someone in Yellowstone, and park officials announced that all large bears in the entire park would be killed, on the grounds they were presumed more dangerous. There'd probably be a public outcry.

    6.) Many believe sharks are important to the ecosystem, and thus to humans, over & beyond the aesthetic value they hold to admirers and environmentalists.

    I don't know how many large tiger sharks a random human life is worth, but given that shark culling will slay a much larger number of sharks than human lives saved, it's something to think about.

    And as other people have mentioned, there are things killing a lot more people than the sharks are. You gonna outlaw pet dogs? Take away our salt shakers? I imagine you could outlaw smoking and save far and away more human lives than exterminating all human-dangerous sharks combined (albeit by violating human liberty to do it). Or take away alcohol. Outlaw tree climbing...

    Seems to me sharks are far down the logical chain of dangerous things to be dealing with.

    Wingy and shoredivr like this.
  6. bowlofpetunias

    bowlofpetunias Oh no, not again! Staff Member

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Sydney Australia

    A ScubaBoard Staff Message...

    Due to the wording of the OP this Thread has been moved from Basic Scuba to The Causes Forum
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2014
  7. shoredivr

    shoredivr Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Ontario
    Nah, mate, the problem is people. There are too many people on this earth. Get rid of the people and the oceans will do just fine.
    underH2Oman and Wingy like this.
  8. DaleC

    DaleC Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Leftcoast of Canada
    Rarely do people simply accept risk at face value. They usually try to mitigate it, which is what the cull, right or wrong, is attempting to do. Personally, I think it will prove to be wrong but I understand the motivation. If I were only responsible for my own safety I could accept all sorts of compromises, and in fact did/do. When you are charged with the safety of others, your POV changes.

    When advocates show great concern for animals but little to no concern for humans they do their cause a disservice. To the common man, or those who have to make public safety decisions, they appear unbalanced and are easy to marginalize. It is very easy to begin painting them as "anti human". Saying humans can just stay out of the water is one of those flippant sounding comments that marginalizes ones position. Does anyone really think a government of an island nation with a multi-billion dollar tourism industry is going to settle for that as a solution? Really? No, it just makes the government feel it cannot turn to those advocates for a sensible solution and drives them towards the other extreme.

    This is a big optics problem that environmental advocacy groups face these days. There is a public perception that many care more for animals than people - which doesn't really appeal to governments or the common man. Some may say "who cares about appealing to them" but then one is not really trying to effect change, because those are the people who need to change. I'm not against a petition but I do believe that the real turning point will come when advocates can offer government a win/win shark/man solution. Not a win/lose one.

    To me, Treadwell was a person who deluded himself into anthropomorphizing bears, believing they were kindred spirits that he could live among. He neither understood their true nature or the risks involved. He convinced a girl of that same idea with fatal consequences. He would also have been deluded to believe that wildlife officers wouldn't kill the bear that ate two people. Just because you wish something doesn't make it so. Acting on those wishes harmed others (human and animal).

    Bears and sharks are very similar. Both are large apex predators. Beautiful. Powerful. Live on the fringes of human populations but mostly avoid contact. Usually resist human predation because of the perceived risk involved to themselves. Occasionally attack by accident or when provoked. Will attack if hunger overrides the risk reward ratio enough. Neither love humans or even care about them with more than casual curiosity.

    In Canada we have learned that the best protection for bears and man are to keep the two far apart. Proximity, and linking humans to food sources, being tops on the list of causal factors for negative interactions. Where are the petitions against the habituation to humans and linking of humans to food that the diving tourism industry promotes?

    Every time a diver feeds a shark or tries to pet it, they erode the existing uncertainty barrier that keeps sharks from seeing man as an easily attained food source.
    drrich2 likes this.

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