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Shark 'trophy' hunters land in hot water

by Alan Everett on 16 Aug 2016
Great White Shark Klaus Jost http://www.jostimages.com/
Two young men who removed the jaws of a dead Great White Shark have found themselves in trouble with the law.

The men came across the two metre shark on the 90 mile beach east of Seaspray.

They decided to remove the jaws as a trophy but Great White Sharks are fully protected, even when dead, no matter how they have died.

Senior Fisheries Officer in Gippsland, Errol Parmigiani said even if found dead on the beach, it was illegal to cut or remove any part of a Great White Shark.

“Land based game fishing is increasing in popularity along the 90 mile beach,” Mr Parmigiani said.

“There are shark competitions scheduled on the 90 mile beach in the coming months.

“Fishermen need to be aware that if they catch Great White Sharks they need to be released immediately unharmed.

“Great White Sharks are still protected when they are dead.

“The reason is that people may claim that the shark has died from natural causes when in fact they have caught it themselves.

“If they were not fully protected alive or dead it would not provide any real protection at all.

“A complete ban is enforced to discourage everyone from taking Great whites.

“Even though the men were dealt with by way of a diversionary order in the Sale Magistrates Court. It still cost them over $300 each. This serves as a timely warning to others.”

There are heavy penalties for taking or possessing a Great White Shark or any part of them.

Anyone who sees or suspects illegal fishing activity is urged to call the 24 hour reporting line 13 FISH (13 3474).
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