Sharks are normally considered solitary hunters, but one incredible video shows that sometimes they do get together -- and in a big way. Off the coast of Australia recently, a rescue helicopter spotted hundreds of sharks in an epic feeding frenzy, capturing the feast on film. The sight of so many big sharks attacking a school of fish prompted authorities to issue a warning to lifeguards in the area, lest their appetite turn to swimmers. According to The Daily Telegraph, experts predict that this year such scenes will be more common, which is prompting the government to install shark nets to prevent attacks along popular stretches of coastline. Mark Brown, a shark specialist and spokesman for the non-profit beach surveillance group Surfwatch, explains why beachgoers on Australia's beaches may want to be wary.
There are a lot of juvenile sharks on the coast this year. They're usually the ones that cause the problems, because when a great white goes from an adolescent to an adult, it's like a human: they're curious, they tend to be a bit reckless, and they bite things. They're the ones who are biting the humans.
While some officials say that shark nets are the best way of preventing shark attacks on humans, the practice is still considered controversial. In the last twenty years, the shark nets have been trapping a lot more than sharks -- including dolphins, whales, turtles, and 15 other critically endangered species. Proponents of shark nets are quick to point out that, although some animals are getting trapped in them, only one person has been fatally attacked on a netted beach.
Still, Australia's Greens Party MLC Ian Cohen, says the practice not only leads to a "significant loss of marine life," but that it's also a too expensive, costing taxpayers over $800,000 a year.
It's another prime example of the Government being hell-bent on looking like they're doing something when what they're doing is a waste of time and money.
This most recent footage of hundreds of shark feeding so close to the beach is likely to revive the debate about how best to keep swimmers safe on Australia's beaches -- and serve as reminder to rest of us to politely decline all invitations to shark-hosted dinner parties.