Adding lethal shark drumlines on Gold Coast is misguided

By : Humane Society International January 8, 2020

Queensland Fisheries has installed six additional lethal drumlines off Palm Beach on the Gold Coast following great white shark sightings in a misguided and ineffective attempt at improving public safety.

"Human safety must be a top priority but the debate around drumlines and culling is misleading. It is not a case of people versus sharks—killing sharks is ineffective for public safety,” said HSI Marine Biologist Lawrence Chlebeck.

The six new lethal drumlines join a slew of shark nets and lethal drumlines already installed in the area.

Last year, Humane Society International won a case at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal which ordered an end to the deliberate killing of sharks in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. The Tribunal concluded that killing sharks was 'superficially attractive' but that the scientific evidence is 'overwhelming' that it does not reduce the risk of shark bites.

The Tribunal ordered for great white, tiger and bull sharks caught on drumlines in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park to be tagged and relocated offshore instead. The orders included a measured transition to non-lethal measures such as SMART drumlines.

"The Queensland Labor Government is acutely aware that culling sharks does not keep people safe and that there is a suite of more effective non-lethal measures that can be deployed to manage the risk of shark bites,” said Mr Chlebeck.

"Queensland is lagging behind other jurisdictions in developing modern shark risk management. There are better ways to protect people in the water, especially on the Gold Coast. Measures like drone surveillance, personal shark deterrence and education should be the priority".

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About HSI Australia

HSI concentrates on the preservation of endangered animals and ecosystems and works to ensure quality of life for all animals, both domestic and wild. HSI is the largest animal protection not-for-profit organisation in the world and has been established in Australia since 1994