Shark attack

I don’t normally comment on current affairs or the news in this blog, because normally the news can be summarized as: war, death, famine, kitten in tree, sport. Of course that is the 24 hour news channel version, the network news shows are more along the lines of: human interest, war, kitten in tree, tragedy, dog puppy in tree, sport, sport gossip. But this news is somewhat baffling.

Apparently Western Australia is going to have a shark cull in an effort to try and kill a white pointer believed to have killed three people recently (article here).

Not too difficult to understand is it? Three deaths in a short amount of time when the world averages 5 deaths per year is something that people start worrying about. What is baffling though is that we are concerned about 3 deaths. People are 300 times more likely to drown than die from a shark attack in Australia. Or put another way, if you wanted to get rid of that jerk at work, you could save the expense on the shark and just use water (see this article on sharks and risk).

Human Deaths in Australia Between 1980-1990, Inclusive (from Stevens & Paxton, 1992)
Cause of Death
Total Deaths
Average per year
Crocodile Attacks
Shark Attacks
Lightning Strikes
Bee Stings
Scuba Diving Accidents
Motor Vehicle Accidents

Last time I checked the Great White Shark was an endangered species and humans are at near plague proportions, especially Americans – the shark’s favourite food. Sixty one percent of the world’s shark attacks are in North America and American’s are making popular shark food in Australia as well. See the big mistake here is that sharks keep mistaking Americans for food.

Now I’d be the first to admit that Americans are very tasty, something has to come of that high fat and sugar diet. But what we really need to do is help Americans to stop looking like food. Is it just that Americans are tastier than the rest of the world’s people? Is it genetic? Or are is it just that the people who were attacked by a shark looked too much like a seal? Either way it is clear that the worry over sharks is more about them not being cute enough, maybe Spielberg should do a revised Jaws movie that focuses on the danger of mosquitoes: When you hear them buzz, you’re DEAD!

8 thoughts on “Shark attack

  1. Has it gone to full-out cull, now? I thought they were just looking for the shark that had gained a taste of human flesh (specifically American human flesh, as you point out). Granted, how exactly does one do that? "Excuse me, shark, have you eaten anything human in the last week?" I guess you stop killing when you open one up that has human parts inside, but it sucks to be the others.


  2. At the moment they are looking for dark shark shaped shadows in the water and assuming if they get Richard Dreyfus and a boat together then they can kill the right one.Whole heap of nothing. If they didn't report the attack in such a frenzied manner no-one would care. It ranks right up there with worrying about being hit by falling satellite debris.


  3. Kill the dam things its no different if u go out in the bush and a wild dog attacked your child and killed him the dog would be hunted down and killed its about elimination of a hazard the same as u would in a work place so by eliminating the hazard u eliminate the risk they have a whole ocean out there they don't need to come around here and eat me or my family.


  4. Well I reckon we should kill all drink drivers. And power tools, should destroy all of them. And bees, kill them all. All responsible for more deaths in a month than sharks in several years.You used a bad analogy I'm afraid. First of all, sharks don't attack you, they attack what they think is dinner only to find it isn't and then leave. You rarely get a single shark continuing to attack a human. Multiple sharks can be an issue, but that is rare as well.Secondly, you aren't eliminating any risk by removing a shark. Simply put, the sharks aren't really the risk the media and people like yourself make out. You have more risk of a bee attack and dying from said same. No-one even thinks to minimise or eliminate those risks (even allergic people still live near flowers, etc).


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