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News

Fishnets killed sharks: report

January 15, 2013 6:01 pm

The death of baby hammerhead sharks washed ashore on Nukulau Island in Suva recently was likely caused by local fishermen.

Permanent Secretary for Fisheries, Inoke Wainiqolo says the report compiled by the team sent to investigate the finding revealed four possible causes – however – the only highly likely cause is that the sharks were caught in a
gillnet.

Wainiqolo says the gill of the shark is the softest part of its body, and it must have been eaten away by some other fish when it was caught in the net.

“We also agreed this is the reason because there was another fish, not of the same species, that was found floating dead in the sea on the day. It was also disposed off.”

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The other three reasons fisheries officer came up with were, a possible disease outbreak, a dolphin attack and the killing of a mother hammerhead shark.

However – these three reasons were discarded as they were either highly unlikely to happen, no evidence exist for such a claim or there were no such recorded cases in the country.

Meanwhile, Wainiqolo says another team is on the ground in Nukulau and the nearby areas to find out what really happened.

He adds fishermen in the area are also being educated on the effects their fishnets can have on marine life.

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