Shark sightings close Byron beaches

SWIMMERS at Byron Bay got a little bit more than they bargained for yesterday as numerous sharks were spotted at beaches around the headland.

Tom Burns, Byron Bay lifeguard, putting up a sign to warn people not to go swimming at Watego. Sharks have been sighted. Swimmers (LtoR) Maxine Willis and Keeley Thomas of Alstonville are getting out of the water. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Tom Burns, Byron Bay lifeguard, putting up a sign to warn people not to go swimming at Watego. Sharks have been sighted. Swimmers (LtoR) Maxine Willis and Keeley Thomas of Alstonville are getting out of the water. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

 

Northern NSW Lifeguard co-ordinator from Surf Lifesaving Australia, Scott McCartney said that by lunchtime beaches had been closed from The Wreck all the way up to Tallows Beach as precaution following the sightings.

Rumours of great white shark sightings ran around town and on the internet yesterday, but Mr McCartney said that the only species of sharks the Surf Lifesavers had spotted had been shovelnose sharks, leopard sharks and possibly some bronze whalers.Mr McCartney said that after the closing of the beaches, lifeguards would be on jet skis all day, watching out for the sharks and informing beachgoers.

But he said that despite beach closures and lifesavers asking people not to swim, some people wouldn’t listen.

“In the end if they want to stay out there and surf and swim, that’s their choice, we can’t stop them.”

He said the shark sightings did indicate potential danger.

Another shark spotted at Byron Bay recently. Ben Bennink

Another shark spotted at Byron Bay recently. Ben Bennink

“It’s an odd occurrence, having so many shovelnose and leopard sharks so close to shore.

:”They’re coming into knee deep water…. We’re wondering why (they are),” he said.

Keeley Thomas and Maxine Willis, both 18 of Alstonville, had come up to Byron Bay for a swim at Wategos beach, but after they had been in the water only a short time, they, along with all the others in the water, were called a-shore by the lifeguards.

The two said they were a bit frightened by the shark warnings.

“I can’t believe we went in,” Ms Thomas said.

“I’m terrified of sharks!

“I’m just glad they called us in when they did, before we went out further.”

http://www.northernstar.com.au

 

 

Beaches closed after shark sightings

Update: Trigg and Scarborough beaches have been re-opened after a 3.5m Tiger shark was sighted 300m off shore this morning.

The shark was spotted travelling south-west from the Westpac Lifesaver Helicopter about 8am and again at 9am

Swimmers were also kept out of the water between Leighton and Port beaches this morning after an unidentified 2m shark was spotted 50m offshore.

Cottesloe beach has been reopened after a 2m shark was sighted travelling toward the coast from about 400m off shore earlier today.

Source: TheWest

Shark Sighted Sign

Shark Sighted Sign

 

Queensland’s Shark Control Program

15.5 foot Tiger Shark caught in Queensland’s Shark Control Program

Surfers’ relief as monster tiger shark caught off Yaroomba

 
By Peter Hall, The Courier-Mail,
January 11, 2013

A MONSTER tiger shark that has been spooking surfers on the Sunshine Coast has been caught a few hundred metres from shore.

The 4.72m giant was reeled in from a drumline off Yaroomba near Coolum Beach.

Shark catcher Paddy Dimond, doing his rounds yesterday morning as part of the State Government’s Shark Control Program, said it was the largest shark he had caught in the region in his five years in the job.

Mr Dimond and deckhand Lachlan Tuckwell could not drag the 500kg-plus creature aboard.

He said the pregnant female was believed to be the same shark that had sent boardriders racing to shore after recent sightings. “This is the biggest shark I’ve seen up here. It is probably the one local surfers have been talking about.”

The tiger was destroyed, measured and dragged 5km offshore. As guidelines dictate, it had its stomach contents examined, revealing several baby sharks.

Fisheries Queensland’s Shark Control Program manager Jeff Krause said it reaffirmed the need for drumlines and netting.

Source: couriermail.com.au

UPDATE 12. January 2013

Photo credit goes to Glenn Barnes

 

Tiger Shark caught in Queensland

15.5 foot Tiger Shark caught in Queensland’s Shark Control Program

15.5 foot Tiger Shark caught in Queensland’s Shark Control Program

15.5 foot Tiger Shark caught in Queensland’s Shark Control Program

 

 

South African Shark Control Program

10 foot Great white shark caught in South African Shark Control Program

Great white shark caught off Sunwich Port

 
By SUGAN NAIDOO, looklocal,
11. January 2013

The 316kg animal had a satellite tag attached to its dorsal fin.

A GREAT white shark was caught on a drum line at Sunwich Port, near Port Shepstone yesterday (Thursday). The animal was 3.1m in length and weighed in at 316kg. The shark was taken to the  Sharks Board’s headquarters at Umhlanga.

Sheldon Dudley, chief scientist at the Sharks Board, said the shark was found by its Pumula base staff at about 6am, during routine early morning checks. “The shark had been satellite tagged on  it its dorsal fin.  This tagging was done by South African researchers with the assistance of Ocearch, a US based organisation that had funded the research, and provided the satellite tags and a research ship to attach the tags to the sharks,” he said.

Mr Dudley added that there are between 20 and 30 sharks caught  in shark nets and by drum lines each year. “The advantage of drum lines, which are  large, anchored floats from which a single baited hook is suspended, is that, unlike sharks nets, they do not catch a lot of other animals,  such as  dolphins, turtles and rays.”

Most of the shark nets deployed by the KZNSB are 214m long and 6m deep and are secured at each end by two 35 kg anchors; all have a stretched mesh of 51 cm.  The nets are laid in two parallel rows approximately 400m offshore and in water depths of 10-14m. Most beaches are protected either by two nets or one net and four drum lines, but this varies from beach to beach.

Source and Photo Credit: looklocal.co.za

A GREAT white shark was caught on a drum line at Sunwich Port, near Port Shepstone yesterday (Thursday). The animal was 3.1m in length and weighed in at 316kg

A GREAT white shark was caught on a drum line at Sunwich Port, near Port Shepstone yesterday (Thursday). The animal was 3.1m in length and weighed in at 316kg

Source and Photo Credit: looklocal.co.za

 

 

Fisheries set to bait shark

Update, 5pm: The Department of Fisheries is set to deploy bait after a kill order was issued for a shark in the South West.

Shark Sighted Sign

Shark Sighted Sign

The sharks, one reportedly up to four metres long, have been spotted swimming near several popular beaches including Meelup, Bunker Bay and Quindalup since Christmas, with one swimming just 20m from shore.

The most recent sighting was reported at about 4pm, when the South West Rescue Helicopter spotted a 3m shark tracking north from Eagle Bay, Dunsborough. Meelup Beach has been closed.

The Department of Fisheries is set to deploy baited drum lines near Castle Rock this evening.

Department of Fisheries Regional Manager Tony Cappelluti said shark sighting had been reported every day since Christmas except for December 31.

“The repeated confirmed sightings and pattern of behaviour during the peak holiday season is particularly concerning,” he said.

“Therefore an order was issued for Department of Fisheries staff to set hooks and lines with a view to catching and destroying a white shark if a confirmed shark sighting occurred.”

The sharks are caught using drum lines, large hooks anchored to the ocean floor and baited with tuna or mackerel.

Once caught, the shark is brought alongside a boat and shot by fisheries officers using a special firearm or it drowns from exhaustion because it cannot swim away.

Attempts to capture the creatures yesterday were unsuccessful, but several Fisheries boats remain in the area.

“The department has had two vessels on the waters around Dunsborough with the capacity to set hooks and lines,” Mr Cappelluti said.

“The larger vessel has the capacity to retrieve and destroy a shark if required.”

The power to order the capture or killing of any shark deemed an “imminent threat” to members of the public was granted to the director-general of fisheries late last year after five fatal shark attacks in the space of 10 months in WA waters.

Senior fisheries officials have previously made it clear that the capture/kill orders were being used as a last resort, when all other measures to protect members of the public had been exhausted.

Mr Cappelluti said helicopters and on-water patrols had been used, but could not reach many of the region’s more isolated beaches.

http://au.news.yahoo.com

 

 

Shark sightings close beaches

Surf Life Saving WA has been kept busy with several shark sightings along the coast today.

Shark Sighted Sign

Shark Sighted Sign

Rangers closed Floreat Beach this afternoon after a rescue helicopter spotted a 3m-long shark “300m north of Floreat drain, 150m offshore and tracking west”.

A 3m-long tiger shark was spotted swimming 150m from the shore at Brighton Beach this afternoon.

Brighton and Scarborough beaches were closed, although Scarborough has since been re-opened.

SLSWA has tweeted: “The Westpac Rescue Helicopter has resighted the 3m tiger shark. It is now 300m offshore @ Peasholm Street dog beach, tracking north (sic).

“The area from Brighton to Peasholm Street dog beach is closed.”

Surf Life Saving WA tweeted two hours ago that the South West Helicopter had also seen a 3.5m shark 100m offshore at Castle Rock Road.

A 3m-long shark was also spotted 50m offshore, north-west of Eagle Bay, this morning.

It is not known what species of shark was spotted.

http://au.news.yahoo.com