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which shows a whole bunch of Blacktip sharks going crazy around the camera. This has sparked the start of a debate on the ethics of baiting sharks in order to attarct them for groups of divers to view or photograph.
I was hoping for a few opinions on this matter, as I'm involved in shooting sharks myself, and I'd like to guage what folk feel is acceptable. There's a "comments" section on the above URL, and I was hoping to get a few responses here too.
I think most on this board know the great debate about baiting sharks.
2005 poll 70% against 30% for
When it comes to diving, I am most interested in sharks. I think most people know that unless you bait sharks, they are not going to stick around very long. I also feel that the popularity of sharkdiving has helped with shark conservation.
I don't have a problem with it...I would rather get natural encounters, but sometimes that not always the case
Hawaii has a State Law prohibiting wildlife feeding tours, similar to other States. This works here because 99.9% of all dive sites are within state waters (3 miles from shore). Our only shark tours are snorkel cages beyond 3 miles out. The sharks involved are not reef sharks, although there are infrequent tigers. The chum slick does not get that close to shore and is far from any recreational area. Scuba divers are not feeding the sharks and 99.9% of the humans are in a cage so as done here it is really a non-issue with everyone except the seriously hummus breathed reef hugging far far left (and a few surfers - oh well). If all wildlife feeding tours met similar criteria there would be less controversy.
i associate plates and silverware with food. you won't catch me nibbling on either one.
Hmmmm....I hope your cognitive and analytical abilities are a little more developed than your average shark.
Well, there was the classic story about a woman putting some honey on her daughter's hand to get a photo of a grizzly licking the hand while the family was on vacation in Yellowstone. Apparently mom got a perfectly timed photo of the bear chomping down on her daughter's hand.
Yes, as usual there's a fine balance to this whole story... I've gotta say though, chumming and feeding sharks in South Africa has never resulted in a mishap. You've gotta give the sharks some credit, they're not stupid.
At Gansbaai, five permitted operators have been chumming every day for over 10 years now. Sometimes within spitting distance of a bathing beach. There has never been an attack anywhere in this area... We chum in the same bay, and freedive with the Great Whites, and we've never had a problem.
Maybe its time to make informed decisions about this whole association debtate, Docmartin, you hit the nail on the head!
I am strongly against this practice. I have a gut feeling that constantly putting humans and chum in the water in order to lure the sharks is a dangerous thing to do. How about a little respect for these animals and for the ocean itself? As a diver that does not dive with meat and does not dive to see aggressive shark behavior I regret that others have made it a priority. Sharks should be encouraged to identify food as seals, fish, birds, etc and not as human divers.