There was recently a fatal great white attack on Ben Linden, a surfer in the Western Australian waters. This attack has prompted the Western Australian government to consider taking great white sharks off of the protected species list. If this were to happen, one of the most extraordinary specimens on this earth could be threatened by the possibility of an exponential increase of being hunted.
Norman Moore, Western Australia’s Fisheries Minister, said he would push to allow recreational and commercial fishing of great whites.
Great white sharks are top level predators in many of the marine ecosystems around the world. Their role at the top of the food chain means they control many populations of the oceans. Removal of this top level predator could be devastating for an ecosystem and could lead to irreversible effects or complete collapse of an ecosystem. This has been witnessed before in other areas where the top level predator was removed. Although the death of Ben is devastating, we should not see this as an opportunity to wipe out his killer. Through many misconceptions about sharks many people believe they are specifically hunting for humans. This is not the case; it is usually a case of mistaken identity. In 2011 there were 12 deaths from unprovoked shark attacks. Compare that to the tens of millions of sharks slaughtered each year for shark fin soup.
If you want to help, click here to sign a petition being sent to Norman Moore, sharing your concerns. They only need 350 more signers!