Australia Will Now Kill Sharks on Sight
Spate of attacks prompts controversial new policy on west coast
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Sep 27, 2012 6:54 PM CDT
A great white cruises.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Australia has seen a big increase in shark attacks in recent years, including a record five deaths in 2012—all of which is bad news for swimmers and now for sharks as well. The state of Western Australia has put into place an aggressive new policy to track and kill sharks spotted anywhere in the general vicinity of swimmers, reports the Australian. It's a major shift from previous policy, which allowed such hunts only after attacks.

"We will always put the lives and safety of beachgoers ahead of the shark," said Premier Colin Barnett. "This is, after all, a fish—let's keep it in perspective." The change, along with Barnett's it's-just-a-fish remark, has conservation groups seething. One condemns it as a "guilty until proven innocent" policy. NBC News notes that as recently as March, after a fatal attack, Barnett rejected the idea of changing the policy: "The ocean is the domain of the shark and we go there with a risk always." The subsequent deaths ramped up political pressure to do something, however.

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Jul 22, 2013 8:15 AM CDT
Finally someone with common sense...placing the lives of people over the lives of fish.
Jul 21, 2013 2:02 PM CDT
it is not as bad as some may think, there are thousands of miles of beaches and few miles of those will shoot a wayward killing machine. The oceans are also our domain ,we have developed to that point Thousands upon thousands of open water square miles are strictly controlled and utilized by the big fanged people eaters. More important problem is that the custom in many so called "developing societies" dictates that having ten children is just a beginning .
Sep 28, 2012 10:57 PM CDT
yea, thats it. put MORE blood in the water because some idiot wants to dance with death for a 30 second rush.