Hallo, I'm Lois. I'm 20 years old and currently at University studying Marine and Natural History Photography. I'm originally from Birmingham (England!) , but I'm living in Falmouth right now. P.S My blog doesn't make sense and is full of random ramblings. :)
Waking up to this image plastered all over Facebook is not the best way to start the day. Fishermen in Newquay caught this poor thresher shark on Tuesday morning. Their little, ignorant, money hungry minds decided to kill it and land it for profit. You would expect that people who live in Cornwall would be more educated about the state of our oceans, and would be aware of how important it is to conserve the fragile marine ecosystems we so heavily depend on. But no, they’re just as ignorant as the rest of the world.
The trouble with fishermen like this is that they are too money hungry to give a fuck about what they’re doing. It’s not helped by the fact that they won’t be prosecuted for killing the shark, but they will be praised and generously paid. When they caught the shark, they would have been aware of the events that unfolded just a few months ago. A larger thresher shark was caught off the coast of Looe, the fishers, who decided to land it, not only got their 15 minutes of fame - but sold the shark on for £3,000. Of course the media decided it would report that fact. Unaware that by doing so they encouraged more and more people to take up shark hunting as a sport, because they now know that they will gain a profit.
Honestly, as angry as I am at the idiot fishermen… I’m far more annoyed by the press’ reactions. They should not encourage such irresponsible behaviour by paying the killers for permission to publicise their story. They should not be mentioning the huge profit they generated, and they should NOT be writing about it in such a positive way.
As usual, in articles about these recent thresher shark catches there is no mention of how endangered they are. No mention of how, this supposed “man eating killing machine” is being wiped out thanks to ignorance they are helping spread. Instead, you find headlins like the following (from The Telegraph):
It is ridiculous headlines like this that make people think what the fishermen are doing is ok. If you click the quote and read the article you will see the positive remarks made about catching and killing the creature. You’ll see images showing happy fishermen, and quotes about the whole town celebrating. I am 100% sure that the whole town was not celebrating. There are many conservationists based in Looe, and educated members of the public, who were aware and outraged at the events that unfolded just 20 miles off their shore.
With the media constantly getting away with portraying this struggling creature in such a negative light, it is no wonder that people are so wrongly terrified of sharks. Headlines like the one shown above will not only have a negative impact on the sharks, but also on Cornish tourism. With this unjustified fear the media are generating, people will soon feel too scared to visit beaches in Cornwall if stories like this keep appearing in the news. It’s shocking that the media don’t seem to see or care that they are having such a strong knock-on effect, all they care about is writing that attention-grabbing headline…
I think I’ve senselessly ranted long enough now, but what I’m trying to say is…we must never forget how much power we have over top ocean predators; these supposed killing machines are, in reality, fragile creatures that are being annihilated by human activity.
Posted on November/15/2012
Tagged as: Sharks, Ocean Conservation, Cornwall, Newquay, Looe, fishermen, fishing, thresher shark, conservation, marine life, the telegraph, scuba diving, Wavecrest Scuba, England, shark,