Forget ‘Jaws’ fears, it’s sharks that are under attack
So said marine programme Wild Oceans, which at the weekend launched its “Shark Attack,” a three-year shark and ray protection effort.
Working with the Shark Conservation Fund, the project focuses on knowledge improvement, increased legal protections, support and training for implementation of conservation measures.
“Forget Jaws, it’s the sharks that are under attack. We kill over 100 million sharks every year as bycatch or for their meat and fins,” said Karen Sack, chief executive and president of Ocean Unite.
Achmat “Sharkboy” Hassiem, who lost his leg to a great white shark at Muizenberg beach in 2006, spoke at the launch and said he was “working to protect that shark that bit him”.
“I would actually like to thank her for what she did for my dreams,” he said.
Wild Oceans’ executive Jean Harris said they are working with the IUCN Shark Specialist Group, TRAFFIC, the South African National Parks, the South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity, and the National Research Foundation, among others.