Although the leap in deaths is attention-grabbing, the probabilities of being mauled and killed by a shark are nonetheless extraordinarily slim, specialists say. Final yr, 11 individuals had been concerned in what the Worldwide Shark Assault File defines as “unprovoked assaults” in Australia. None of these had been deadly. Probably the most, 41, occurred in the US, however no person died there, both.
Sharks don’t actively hunt human beings however might assault after they really feel threatened or confuse individuals for prey. Drone footage, scientists say, has proven that sharks will typically swim in the identical water as surfers and bathers with out attacking them. Scientists are exploring options that embrace attaching LED lights to the bottoms of surfboard to stop sharks from complicated surfers with seals.
‘Political scorching potato’
Nonetheless, the difficulty has develop into a “political scorching potato,” Professor Brown mentioned, with state governments dashing to take a position cash in beach-protection measures together with setting traps for the animals, utilizing drones to trace them and enclosing seashores in shark nets — even supposing the meshing applications have been shown to have little success.
The deaths have additionally reignited debate round culling the creatures, which animals rights activists say is inhumane. Nets positioned across the seashores to guard swimmers have additionally resulted within the unintentional deaths of hundreds of different marine creatures together with turtles, stingrays and aquatic mammals known as dugong.
Even a few of those that have been attacked by sharks oppose culling or capturing them. The police fired about 25 bullets on the shark that killed Mr. Cernobori.
“I’ve at all times been towards the culling of them,” mentioned Phil Mummert, 28, who survived an assault off Western Australia in July. Mr. Mummert was browsing at Bunker Bay, south of Perth, when a shark bit his board in twoand punctured his higher thigh, simply an inch from his femoral artery.
He mentioned he was glad that, in the long run, the authorities had not succeeded in finding the shark that had attacked him. “There’s simply no technique to know that’s the one,” he mentioned.