From John Ray's shorter notes

November 06, 2019

Queensland tourist industry calls for non-lethal shark control measures

This is a disgrace.  The tourism industry wants to have its cake and eat it too.  The unmentioned fact below is that shark diving is a significant tourist activity.  Going down in cages to observe sharks is a big thrill. So the tourism operators want to keep the sharks alive.  But what about the swimmers?

Swimmers have been kept safe in tourist areas for many years by catching the sharks on hooked lines and killing them. But that has now been forbidden in some areas.  So swimmers are already getting bitten. And that is VERY bad for tourism.

The way the tour operaters propose to square the circle is by using airy-fairy catch and release strategies that offer a very low level of protection to swimmers.  But that is OK to the operators.  They would rather have live sharks and a few dead tourists

I was alerted to the fact that there was something fishy going on (forgive the pun) when I saw that the Greenies were praising the tourism operators

Queensland tourism operators are demanding urgent government action to control sharks in the Great Barrier Reef amid fears foreign tourists are being scared off.

The call comes after bickering by state and federal governments over the best way to control sharks around the popular Whitsunday Islands and other destinations. The two governments have been at loggerheads, with Queensland calling on Canberra to pass laws allowing it to kill sharks in the reef.

In a joint statement, tourist operators have called for aerial shark spotters, netted swimming areas, particularly around Stradbroke Island, and SMART drum lines.

The Queensland Tourism Industry Council, Tourism Whitsundays and Tourism Tropical North Queensland are concerned without such measures to protect swimmers, tourists will be turned off the region.

There are also demands for an investigation in increased shark attacks in the wake of last week's incident involving two British backpackers in the Whitsundays. Alistair Raddon, 28, and Danny Maggs, 22, were attacked in the waters of Hook Passage on Tuesday, leaving Mr Raddon without a foot and Mr Maggs with a lacerated calf.

They had been on a ZigZag Whitsundays boat tour and were in the water when the shark bit one man before circling and returning to bite the other. They are now planning to tell their story to British media and there is concern the fallout may deter overseas tourists.

Shark attacks in Queensland have recently become a political football between state and federal governments. The stoush began after Queensland lost a federal court battle to be allowed to use baited hooks to catch and kill sharks in the reef, requiring state fisheries staff to now catch and release sharks.

It has called on the government to introduce laws to circumvent this decision, but the federal government has told them to use SMART drum lines, despite state fisheries authorities saying they didn't work


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