Kill! Kill! Kill!

On an overcast day off of west-coast Australia
A man, from his boat, took a dive
But he’d chosen a spot that’s a diner for sharks
So he never would surface alive.

The order has come now, to search and destroy
Permission to kill them on sight
It’s sharks being sharks, in their home habitat
So it’s time we should kill the great white.

When humans meet sharks in the blue of the ocean
And blood will be shed in the dark
One is the planet’s most dangerous killer;
The other of these is a shark.

This week, in the Cuttletown Local Paper, there were three stories of multiple deaths in traffic accidents. Sad and tragic, and all within a very small area, not even the larger nearby Cuttlefish City.

In Australia, there have been three recent single deaths by shark attack. So clearly, it’s time to cull an endangered species.

Fisheries officials have issued a kill order and laid baited hooks in the hope of capturing what is believed to be a 3m (10ft) Great White.

As with all entrapment schemes, this took some thinking:

Regional Manager Tony Cappelluti told the Associated Press news agency that the hooks were removed from the water after six hours for fear the tuna bait would attract more sharks to the area.

It seems it is our nature to overreact. I really hope they use caution.

Western Australia Premier Colin Barnett has said he would consider a shark cull, and his government is looking into the possibility of increasing aerial shark patrols.

But scientists have warned against over-reacting.

Barbara Weuringer, marine zoologist and shark researcher at the University of Western Australia, urged against a shark hunt, saying the only way to know which shark attacked is to kill one and open up its stomach.

“It sounds a little bit like taking revenge,” she was quoted by AP as saying. “And we’re talking about an endangered species.”

Sharks are a common feature of Australian waters but, according to the Australian Shark Attack File, attacks are rare with only 53 fatalities in the last half-century.


  1. says

    Revenge, and I wonder how much of it comes from that old “once an animal kills a human being, it becomes a danger to other people” crap that either stems from a belief that predators fear us instead of seeing us as just another meal, or that as humans we are the tastiest animal of all.
    Whatever the case, I’ve always found it ridiculous that we punish predators for being predators. If we leave them some hunting grounds with other prey and stop encroaching into their space, there wouldn’t be as many problems.

  2. stuartg says

    So, humans have been attacked by the top predator when they have gone into that predator’s hunting environment. What’s new about that?

    I believe that it will be time to cull the great white only when one attacks me in my hunting environment, say the supermarket car park.

  3. Kylie Sturgess says

    My first response upon reading “The world’s most efficient predator, off the coast of Perth,” was to think “You have to stop writing things about me, Cuttle, people will talk…” :p
    But yes, I’ve had a few scientists here comment unfavourably about the methods, despite the tragedy of the deaths.

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