News24

City backs filmmaker after shark attack claims

2012-04-20 22:06

Cape Town - The tagging of False Bay sharks for a documentary could not be linked to an attack on a bodyboarder, the City of Cape Town said on Friday.

"The lack of satellite signal is clear information that the shark involved in the attack is not one of the sharks tagged by the Ocearch Research Programme," environmental policy and strategy head Gregg Oelofse said.

"Two of the sharks tagged in False Bay have given off signals and were located in the Macassar/Strandfontein area [about 20km away] shortly before the attack."

Oelofse said there was therefore no evidence to suggest the tagging of four great white sharks had any role to play in the attack.

The City also defended documentary-maker Chris Fischer's use of chum [bait], saying the amount was insignificant.

"The Ocearch programme operated in False Bay at Seal Island on Sunday and Monday... Any residual chum from their activities would have dissipated within hours, and due to the wind direction, moved from the island in an opposite direction to that of Kogel Bay."

SA bodyboarding team member David Lilienfield, 20, was at popular surfing area, Caves, in Kogel Bay with his brother around noon on Thursday when a great white shark attacked him.

The shark made three passes at him and bit his right leg on the third pass. He died in the water from a loss of blood and his body washed up on the shore.

Nor responsible

Fischer had also defended the actions of his team, the target of stinging criticism on Facebook after the attack

He had posted a message on the television show Shark Men's Facebook page on Thursday denying that his team was responsible for the man's death.

"We departed False Bay over three days ago after working there from Sunday afternoon... to Monday afternoon... During our 24 hrs of work... there we chummed 24kg of pilchards [sardines]."

This was less than the amount released by each of three cage diving boats per day, Fischer said.

"We are terribly sorry again for the loss of this family and at this time our thoughts and prayers are with them."

Facebook users had attacked Fischer on the Shark Men Facebook page, where South Africans blamed the documentary-makers for the man's death.

His research permit was cancelled by the environmental affairs department shortly after the attack.

Biodiversity and Coastal Research director Alan Boyd said at the time the attack was a tremendous tragedy and he was very shocked.

"No more field work will be proceeding from here on out," he said.

Boyd recently granted the permit to Fischer to film great white sharks in the Cape. At the time it caused fears this could attract sharks to populated beaches.

Fischer had been in the country for the past month capturing and filming sharks in their natural habitat for the National Geographic documentary Shark Men.

Dirk Schmidt, a wildlife photographer and author of White Sharks, had called for a high shark alert to be issued, saying possible shark-human interaction or even attacks could not be excluded.

His concern was that up to five tons of chum (bait) would be used to attract sharks to the boat. He said the chum slick could be blown closer to beaches by on-shore winds.

At the time Boyd issued the permit, he said the chumming would have little effect close to shore, especially as the large amount would be used over a 20-day period all along the southern coast.

Uninformed

The City of Cape Town said that although it had no role in the research programme it was essential to provide the correct information to the public as "linking the two unrelated activities is uninformed and misleading".

It had interviewed all eyewitnesses and considered their information to be accurate.

An eyewitness reported seeing a pod of 30 dolphins moving through the area before the attack, as well as a number of birds feeding on fish.

This could have been an indication that sharks were following a school of fish.

"Considering all the above, it is the view of this report that the fatal shark attack could not have been avoided within reasonable means," the City said.

"Cape Town is a city of 3.5 million people residing along a coastline which forms the natural habitat for [great] white sharks. An unfortunate, tragic and regrettable result of this will be that, on occasion, shark attacks will occur."

The last shark attack in the area was in July 1999, which was not fatal.

In 2006, the Shark Spotters programme did a trial run at Caves, but this was unsuccessful because the area was difficult to access.

The programme was tasked with reporting back by April 30 on requirements for installing a full-time shark spotting service.

The closest signboard detailing shark safety was at Kogel Bay Resort.

The City was satisfied that all emergency procedures were followed following the attack.

Comments
  • george.pito - 2012-04-20 22:16

    yes the city is just as all other cities covering up for a few bucks.

      Scebberish - 2012-04-21 05:45

      FACT, CHUMMING AND PEOPLE IN CAGES TEACHES SHARKES TO ASSOCIATE HUMANS WITH FOOD!!!

      Atholl - 2012-04-21 06:45

      You cannot predict the behaviour of a wild predator.. what the City should do is to lessen the danger to surfers/bodyboarders with a focus on the ::} --- spotting and warning system --- by developing a spotting system (even cameras) by improving the alarm system with flags or loudhailers or whistles --- change human appearance to make them less associated with food --- by changing the wetsuit colours to make them less seal-looking by attaching a sonic device to the board that repels sharks Sharks are mysterious complex creatures ... but science does have the ability to expose a simple weakness in their character ... like sound or light

      pws69 - 2012-04-21 09:04

      Covering up using science and FACTS. Damn these people to hell for letting FACTS get in the way of your bias.

      Jason - 2012-04-21 11:09

      It does seem a little strange that this is the first shark attack in the area in over 14 years and wasn't fatal. Coincidence or not? We also don't know enough about sharks and if there is certain communication that takes place between them since they are generally loners. All I know is that this documentary took place this week and so did a shark attack.

  • Msika - 2012-04-20 22:17

    Irrational thinkers will comment without gathering all the facts right. It was an unfortunate accident, we must stop making Mr Fischer a scape goat. Condolences to the family, may the deceased rest in peace.

      Ben - 2012-04-21 04:51

      I agree. The problem is that sharks have been fed in that area for many years. If you feed any wild animal or bird, it will come back for more and more will come for food. This was one event in an area where thirty years ago you would not really find any sharks.

      John - 2012-04-21 09:49

      @ Ben S.... Sharks are NOT fed in that area.... Never were never will be. In fact no sharks are fed anywhere in SA. Do you have any clue where Kogel Bay even is?????

      John - 2012-04-21 09:51

      @ Screbberish.... Go back and do your own homework and studying of FACTS. There is no link and in fact there there has been no increase in shark attacks

      Jacqui - 2012-04-21 11:45

      Msika, another holier than thou figure.

      Scebberish - 2012-04-22 05:12

      John, you are the uneducated moron! a group of my friends have just returned form one of those adventure tours in South Africa where you can go down in a cage for shark viewing. They chum the water to attract the sharks, Next you will tell me the is no Rhino paoching to. Idiot!

  • cliff.slabbert - 2012-04-20 22:38

    When we all start understanding that the oceans contain animals and fish that do not comprehend what we consider fair game to feed on or not then we will start understanding that we enter their domain on their terms. They do not require democratic constitutions or oceanic courts of law as they are WILD. We as intelligent human beings should have the ability to understand wild animals and should admire their wildness with respect and due caution. We will learn more from research and will be able to understand shark behaviour.Chris Fischer had nothing to do with the sad loss of David Lillienveld. Lets all be more aware of what nature is all about and stop the blame game.

      Sean - 2012-04-20 23:24

      agree 200% Well said !

      Danny - 2012-04-20 23:36

      Well put. Do we allow wild animals in 'our annexxed' domain? no, we took the land by hunting and killing land animals - locking others up in reserves and zoos. yet when attacked out in the wild we say "but he should know there are wild animals". .... Hello, the ocean is NOT a bowl with cute little bubble eyed goldfish that we can poke at! It is the largest unpopulated (by two legged predators) area, home to millions of predators and we (two legged, slow moving in water predators) now think we can just go in and everyone must move out of our way or be killed (as we did on land). Wake up people - their world, their rules! Yes, the ocean is another world and gives pleasure but it is not an aquarium - or are we to lock all these also into tanks to have an empty ocean for ourselves?

      Scebberish - 2012-04-21 05:40

      i agree with you on the most part, but not on the part that involves people who practice chumming!

  • Ian - 2012-04-20 22:52

    money talks, all you politicions are the same, money loving trash

      cliff.slabbert - 2012-04-20 23:04

      Martian?

      Polotic - 2012-04-20 23:40

      Your comment is base and entirely uncalled for. You should be ashamed of yourself. If uyou cannot add anything constructive to the debate stay out of it.

      John - 2012-04-21 04:38

      A'hole, nothing to do with politics.

      John - 2012-04-21 04:40

      Another thing if you are going to talk out of your a'hole, learn to spell.

      Scebberish - 2012-04-21 05:43

      Actually it has quite a bit to do with politics....as in licences from government deppartments for research, and then the researches bring with them chumming, this associates food with humans for sharks, and the chain is complete. Maybe you should all check your own ars3holes first!

      Scebberish - 2012-04-21 05:53

      @JohnB, and the rest of you, he may not spell so good but he certainly reads a hell of a lot better than you do! What is the heading to this article you morons! If it has nothing to do with politicians whay are they coming out and backing people, and the ones who have paid for licences !

      Ian - 2012-04-21 07:02

      its you lot who are the a holes here, if the politicions dont run the city of cape town then who does, (probally you idiots) once again its been proven that money is more important than human safety and lives,Dont get me wrong I am a full supporter of mother nature and everything she does, I love sharks just like I love all animals but to deny responsibility after attracting sharks by chumming knowing full well people are in the water , well then fischer rang the dinner bell himself and should be charged with his murder, but of course like I said money is more important than human safety, anc, da, all the same rubbish

      Polotic - 2012-04-21 08:54

      @and Scebberish and Ian - See the comments below by Bryan. I rest my case!

      pws69 - 2012-04-21 09:14

      @Ian and Scebberish, have you both completely lost the ability to think logically? The City did not say chumming does not attract sharks, and change behaviour, they said that in THIS INSTANCE it was not a factor: FACT 1: Chumming by Shark Men was done THREE DAYS earlier. Between then and the shark attack, SEVERAL cage diving operators had chummed extensively daily. FACT 2: The wind was OFFSHORE, meaning any effect of the Shark Men chumming would have gone OUT TO SEA, and not towards the shore. Are you now saying the shark chose to swim in the OPPOSITE direction of the chumming? Fact 3: There was dolphin and bird activity at the time of the attack, indicating a large school of fish which would likely have attracted the Shark/s. FFS, it is really not that hard to comprehend. If you want to pass blame, then blame the city for allowing chumming by the LICENSED cage diving operators.

      Scebberish - 2012-04-22 05:16

      Poliotick & pussys69: They know this how, the same way they know they are doing a great job combatting crime and running the country? They are experts in sharks? you need to rest more than your case.....

  • tyroymike3 - 2012-04-20 23:03

    Hysterical balderdash !!! This reminds one of witch burning and religious pogroms !!! Seemingly intelligent people raving about obscure facts all meshing together to form even more ridiculous theories. Simple , we have fished out the oceans and now the top ocean predator has become desperate. Less fish results in less seals - very hungry sharks - leaves us skinny humans as the least favourite meal - a seal is huge !! How ironic , humans destroy the environment - humans become the last available snack - got to be a parable for the future generations - if they survive our behaviour today. Chumming and shark cages - yes , attack them but change our own destructive ways ........nah !!!

      Gordon - 2012-04-21 00:50

      almost... there are heaps of seals, that's why sharks bite things that look like seals

      tyroymike3 - 2012-04-21 20:24

      I have dived and surfed that coastline and others since the seventies - never had trouble with sharks even though aerial observations in False Bay throughout that time have shown numerous sharks patrolling the surf line - sometimes in-between the bathers - with very few contacts being reported !! The major change since the sixties and seventies has been the deterioration of marine resources - catches in False Bay have dwindled to almost zero today. Fisherman have been throwing ' chum ' into the water since day dot - it is highly unlikely that cage diving alone has caused these attacks . Seals make much better meals for sharks - we have to analyse the status of the food chain in False bay and make drastic changes to improve the situation.

  • Derek - 2012-04-20 23:23

    R.I.P. our friend in surf! Let all know that chumming, will never, ever!! be a positive in the "debate" of how we manage our beaches and oceans! Profit, from sensibly managed resources, is the way we would like to think is acceptable but we know that exploitation and greed is the undoing. Strength to your family and your friends, R.I.P.

  • Bryan - 2012-04-21 00:42

    The jury has spoken. Mr Fisher and his research team are not guilty as charged. The least we can do is give them their operating licence back so that the can continue their work.

      Andile - 2012-04-21 05:39

      I take it, you come from the US, hence I understand your backing of Mr Fischer. I'm saying all this coz We don't have a Jury in SA.

      Bryan - 2012-04-21 10:00

      Born and bred in Cape Town Andile. I suspect you are from the mentally impoverished and challenged North West or Limpopo. No,I do even know Mr Fisher. His licence was revoked because the authorities needed to appease the outraged public who believed HE was responsible which is clearly not the case. He was a "scapegoat". I don't expect you to know what that is. I you go back to school and if you manage to get past the 6th grade you will understand my statement.

      Scebberish - 2012-04-22 05:18

      Being born and bred in cape town makes you a shark and sealife expert, wow!

      Bryan - 2012-04-22 22:20

      Scebberish. Knowledge is free. You should try to acquire some or remain a dunce for the rest of your life.

  • Bryan - 2012-04-21 01:26

    I have a message for all those emotionally charged individuals who chose to attack both research and cage diving. There are approximately 80 or so great whites in False Bay at any one time throughout the year and by far are heavily concentrated around Seal island which is their "dinner table". It is here that that these operators work and chum the water to attract them. The very act of chumming has the affect of drawing shark activity away from the shallower waters when done offshore as all shark species have incredibly sensitive sensory organs and will be attracted to it. White sharks are by their very nature opportunistic feeders and research has shown that they have a rudimentary form of intelligence which is what part of the research is working on. We will have to live with these creatures and the more we know about them the better. We can start by not wearing black wetsuits in the water and use more brightly coloured suits for starters. We need to be realistic and think rationally and not allow our emotions get the better of us.

      pws69 - 2012-04-21 09:15

      Exactly!

      cliff.slabbert - 2012-04-21 09:28

      Well said Bryan.

  • Kgosi - 2012-04-21 01:34

    Tryed to upload my article though it couldn't be submitted but the system keeps on saying content submitted... How do i upload it?

  • seanpresherhughes_1 - 2012-04-21 02:23

    The research that Mr Fischer is doing could prevent such cases in future - very little scientific info is available in the migration and feeding patterrns of these sharks. We should be greatful of this research and not simply condemn it without thinking clearly of the future consiquences of the investigations/research done albeit goid oir bad. Very little scientific infirmation is known about these sharks, the only way we will ever know more is through scientists' research work, unless the general public woukd like to continue using the beaches and just simply wish for the best each time they enter the domain and movements of, inter-alia great-white-sharks in their areas/beaches! If the public wishes to continue playing the wish game then let them - I just feel that it is very primative for the general public to think this way! Tell me one thing , was tgere a spotter looking out over that beach at the time of the incident? If so, what impact did it make on the situation? Having spotters means nothing if there are already bathers/boarders in the water. These sharks rise from te depths to strike at tge surface! Wayh too fast for any so-called spotter to have time to warn anybody. Having spotters is just there to provide as false sense of security! Good luck to those who continue to use waters that have been well-known for years already, were hotspots for such attacks! These bathers/surfers knowingly use waters that are riddled with seals - what could happen?????

      Werner Lappies Labuschagne - 2012-04-21 08:40

      we need to learn more about all Sharks to prevent this kind of thing from happening,

  • Deon - 2012-04-21 02:54

    Why would Boyd cancel the permit straight after the attack if he didn't think he was wrong. If he was 100% sure that the documentary had nothing to do with the attack ,he would stand by is decision,it shows uncertainty.

      Polotic - 2012-04-21 08:57

      He has responded to misplaced public outrage.

      pws69 - 2012-04-21 09:23

      He needed time to investigate. Once the facts were known, he could reverse the decision. Very responsible behaviour in my opinion.

      Deon - 2012-04-22 01:16

      U investigate first before issuing a permit, not the opposite. By reversing the decision u must have taught it as something to do with the issue

  • Phiwo - 2012-04-21 05:33

    Typical south africans playing the blame game

  • Scebberish - 2012-04-21 05:36

    Shark attacks in South Africa were a rare occurnce for the last 100 years, Then suddenly the craze of this Adventure Cage Diving with Sharks and the Researches came. Along with them came this insane practice of CHUMMING the water. You ever see CHUMMING, its not like throwing a few sardines into the water it is a sea of blood!!! Along with all this food in the water is usually a human. So we ourselves, us humans, have in effect trained sharks that humans are associated with food! Anyone who has ever chummed should be charged with accomplice to murder for every victim that dies of a shark attack. For those of you who disagree, F*ck You.

      John - 2012-04-21 05:58

      Maybe they should use you as chum.

      Sekalf - 2012-04-21 08:02

      XXX Todays 'Donkey of the Blog' award goes to Scebberish Umfazi for his single minded contributions. Well done Umfazi - you deserve it - keep it up!

      pws69 - 2012-04-21 09:18

      Um, how many people were swimming in the ocean 100 years ago? How many swim in the ocean today? Epic fail on you part, so F*ck you.

      cliff.slabbert - 2012-04-21 09:32

      You are a real dork Scebberish - try using your brains for once idiot!

      Scebberish - 2012-04-22 05:21

      When dealing with uneducated dorks who cannot leave the country so pull the wool over their own eyes, one has to decend to your level to get through to your landless identityless simplemindedness! You all dishing out awards while you all third rate citizens in a failed society!

  • Livvi - 2012-04-21 05:56

    R.I.P David, you died doing what you enjoyed most! My condolences to the family.\r\nHaving said that, who really is to blame here?! The shark's habitat is the ocean and humans, over many years have gone to quite substantial lengths to encourage them closer to the shore. Their natural instinct is to attack when they see movement, so it is no surprise when there are shark attacks. The loss of life is tragic but we are in their habitat!! Only time I would be surprised about a shark attack, would be if there was one in my bath or a shopping mall!!

  • Stef - 2012-04-21 05:59

    Then perhaps "The City" should put it's money where it's mouth is and take a prolonged swim there, and why not take Mr Fischer with for the fun!

      Ian - 2012-04-21 06:20

      100%

  • Cheslin - 2012-04-21 07:11

    Ban shark cage diving! if you want to see a shark up close, go to the aquarium.

      cliff.slabbert - 2012-04-21 09:35

      Great White sharks do not survive in aquariums Cheslin.

  • Angela - 2012-04-21 07:27

    Very simplistic explanation - it means they have no idea what the long term effects of chumming have on the shark population. Just leave these animals be.

  • Anton Oosthuizen - 2012-04-21 08:03

    fishermen chum everyday - nothing new . if you Walk through Kruger park and a Lion kills you its Fine - it was hungry - same with Sharks

      Adil Smit - 2012-04-21 08:40

      Would you walk with raw meat in your backpack?

      mike.clery - 2012-04-21 08:50

      @Adil Smit - No, but the victim wasn't carrying dead fish on him either. The correct analogy is "Would you walk within 10 km of a carcass?"

  • Gerald Jordaan - 2012-04-21 08:41

    Surfers should take up skateboarding to obviate shark attacks!! Otherwise accept the risks!! Shark Men only complicate the issue!

  • Eben - 2012-04-21 08:48

    The chummers, try this! put the chum on your boat, smear the deck and some in the water,next thing, they will chum you on your boat.You are teaching the sharks to associate food with boats and humans.

  • bianca.annandale - 2012-04-21 08:57

    Simply put, it was a freak accident. When we swim in the ocean, especially in waters known for shark habitation, we are doing so at our own risk. It is a great tragedy for a young man to lose his life, but to attach blame is a tragedy too. The research allows us to understand our wildlife, it brings tourism and is informative to us. So mourn the death, don't pass blame - it will not bring him back.

  • pws69 - 2012-04-21 09:03

    If we allowed people to walk around the Kruger Park like we swim in the ocean, there would be lots of deaths caused by lions, leopard, hyenas etc. Would people all be outrage demanding predator nets and spotters? Just saying we need to think a little bit and stop getting hysterical. Yes, the death of this young man is very sad, but he knew the risks and died doing what he loved. I have no doubt that chumming is altering the behaviour of sharks, but then so is the over fishing of the oceans. It is far more complex than blaming 24kg of chumming by Shark men, especial when cage divers are doing 5 or 10 times that amount every single day. I starting to think people are becoming automatons, losing the ability to think logically, and for themselves.

      Scebberish - 2012-04-22 05:34

      You keep contradicting yourself in your various comments, but of course in your mind you are the only person in South Africa who can think logically. How white of you, you must be a remnant of the past!

  • Natalie - 2012-04-21 09:15

    Seriously? Just because the shark wasn't a tagged one doesn't mean it hadn't been attracted by their chum. Sharks have a ridiculous sense of smell. I'm not pointing fingers, but don't say it's not possible for them to be responsible AT ALL. And I agree, ALL chumming should come to an end. You want to find sharks for your documentary? Go take your chances spotting them out in the wild like every other film maker on dry land does with finding their animal of interest

  • Jacques - 2012-04-21 09:48

    Why isn't shark cage diving banned yet or chamming for sharks? They have known for years in Gansbaai that the sharks are moving in closer as they are associating the sound of the boats with food. Now National Geographic and Shark Men wanted to chum the waters in False Bay with 5 tons of sardines. What a bunch of idiots. If you want to see a great white or any other shark go and dive with them in their waters and let it happen naturally. I don't see anyone in the Kruger Park sitting in a cage with a lamb leg waiting for the lions to get a closer encounter. There would be an international outcry if that had to happen. Most shark species are on the brink of extinction and it is all because of human interference. Something needs to be done and the sharks are not to blame for any attacks, it is us mankind that are to blame. This latest casualty is on you National Geographic, Shark Men and all the cage diving operators in SA and globally.

  • lytteot7 - 2012-04-21 10:04

    There should be a big sign written \enter at own risk\. After all a man is not a king of the ocean. Wild animals will never be our friends, the quicker we respect their territory like they do ours the better.

  • Jacques Van Der Merwe - 2012-04-21 10:35

    Sharks mostly prey on seals which are becoming rarer and rarer due to overfishing (> 90 % of coastal fish species have been fished to a level of total collapse) and loss of habitat due to coastal developments and crowding of people along the shore line. Sharks are adaptive and opportunistic and by feeding them, they will learn to associate boats with food. This is a complex issue where walking your dog along the beach scaring away the seals to isolated little islands is in a small way contributing, where building your beach home close to the sea reduces habitat and loving your sushi reduces fish populations. To blame the shark researchers as the sole reason for this happening is illogical. But what do you do?

  • Colin - 2012-04-21 11:08

    i don't know the cape area too well, but i can't understand why chumming would be done anywhere within 50kms of beaches or surfing spots. condolences to the family

  • Jacqui - 2012-04-21 11:44

    Now how is it possilbe that when I ask the City of Cape Town a simple question they don't answer and now all of a sudden they know it wasn't this shark or that one?. Beats me.

  • Manu - 2012-04-21 12:27

    Wild animals go where the food is or where they can breed. So what has surprised me in all this is how little the activity of surfing has been blamed for drawing in sharks closer to the shore. The probability of one person walking alone through Kruger national park without being attacked by a lion is pretty high. But send a thousand people on a walk about through Kurger and the interest of the predators will be piqued and the probability of an attack rises. Some may not take this well but surfing is also another form of chumming.

  • billidp - 2012-04-21 14:26

    People, I have grown up and lived in the Western Cape all of my life, and there always have been and always will be shark attacks! They are unfortunate but those are the chances we take when we decide to enter the sea. There is NO PROOF that chumming has increased shark attacks whatsoever. Sometimes something like this is just nature being nature, so STOP trying to find someone to blame!

  • Bryan - 2012-04-21 14:34

    Globally approximately 50 people are taken by sharks. Great whites, Zambezi, Bull and Tiger sharks are the main culprits. In all these (global)cases there was absolutely no CHUMMING ACTIVITY at the time of the attacks. Each and every one was an isolated event just as in the case at Kogel bay this week. Chumming only stimulates the sensory organs and makes the shark more inquisitive but does not create a feeding frenzy with them. There is more than enough cage diving footage to prove this. Coastline and beach water sport activity by humans also creates a scense of curiosity with these creatures and attacks are directly attributed to the degree of curiosity in each case. A man eater may but not necessarily attack anything it determines is weak or has the shape and form of recognizable prey. People get attacked through curiosity, not because we are recognized as food. The bodyboard/surfboard and black wetsuit, swimming arms on the surface are all stimulants. If humans were recognizable prey then all attacks will be fatal with no recovery of the body. Only about 40 percent are fatal and only 10 percent is there no retrieval of the victim. We can learn much more with researching these creatures and it should be encouraged. It is for this reason that we humans do not present ourselves as recognizable prey in the water.

  • Hettie - 2012-04-21 15:29

    the City's been bought by Fischer, so who is it going to back? there is probably still some payment due and they want their money.

  • Craig - 2012-04-21 16:20

    The number of people who access the ocean for recreational purposes such as surfing, fishing etc has increased in the last 100 years ( more people living on the planet) so logically the number of people who will encounter sharks will increase. Therefore the number of fatal attacks will occur. Chumming has is drawbacks and it will attract sharks to where the chumming occuring and not along the whole coastline. If this attack happened and Sharkmen where not filming everyone would have assumed the bait fish that attracted the birds and dolphoins must have attracted the sharks. Looking logically and at the facts presented, no one is to blame.

  • Lauden Kirk - 2012-04-21 16:35

    Tag the lot then we can track them live and we could have live tracking with the surf report.

  • PhotoStrokes.net - 2012-04-21 23:16

    Let's isolate the issue in the South African attack... it is not a question of if the attack was "caused" by Fischer. Unless we go ask the sharks and they can answer, we will never know if there could be a link of previous chumming, the day's chumming, or the tagging, with the shark attack. It is very well likely that there is no link. The issue at hand is if Boyd had included the public and issued a "precautionary warning for possible increased shark activity", would Lilienfield have held off going in the water? Would they have increased spotters along the beach to give better warning? Would more people walking along the water been on the lookout and warned officials of previous sightings earlier? But instead, even after a number of us warned them about the consequences of an attack, Boyd publicly dismissed any "possibility" for increased shark activity and then caused such claims of a possible attack "alarmist".

  • Bryan - 2012-04-23 10:55

    A lot of criticism has been levelled against dive and research operators after this recent incident. Electronic shark attack deterrents are freely available and I would like some feedback on just how many water sports enthusiasts use these devices. Very few (if any) use them and if this is correct then there must be reasons. They are used extensively by many operators world wide including the SA Navy and although pricey are proven effective. It would come as no surprise to find that a very small number of people use them as a result. This is no different from wearing a safety belt when you drive for obvious reasons. My logic tells me that if 10 or more people were in the water, at least 5 of them should be using these devices in order to protect the entire group. The onus is on the YOU to protect yourself in any way you can. Blaming others when you don't take every available means to protect yourself achieves nothing.

  • Billy - 2012-04-27 18:51

    lol. just because its a fish, all reasoning goes out the window for some people. if you feed something continuously in the same area, it will come back there looking for food. its not that hard to understand.

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