It's not the shark's fault

It's not the shark's fault

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A shark warning sign on a beach in the northern New South Wales city of Newcastle
A shark warning sign on a beach in the northern New South Wales city of Newcastle
Photo: AFP

Recently, many teenagers have been attacked by sharks off the coast of Australia. Some have survived, others have not been so lucky, such as Jay Muscat, the 17-year-old-boy who died while spear fishing, and Daniel Smith who died while swimming off Port Douglas in the country's northeast.

These two cases show that even after they are warned to stay out of the water by a sign saying, "Shark Sighted Today", some teenagers will still go into the sea. This results in more shark attacks.

Some say that these attacks are increasing as water sports become more popular. Many teenagers take part in water sports during their spare time, but when we go to the beach, we must pay attention to the shark signs. In fact, if they are posted, we shouldn't go into the water, or it could be deadly.

When a fatality occurs, many people call for the shark to be killed, but it's not the shark's fault. This is surely a problem with the teenagers' attitude: if you stay out of the water when the sign is posted, you will definitely not run into any shark problems.

Mandy Tand Pik-ying, CCC Chuen Yuen College
 

From the Editor

Thank you for your letter, Mandy. I must say I checked as many news stories about the two attacks as I could find, but none of the articles I read mentioned anything about warning signs.

Sharks are amazing creatures. They are predators at the top of the food chain that have survived for thousands of years. But as the human population swells and more people take up ocean sports, we come into contact with them more often than ever. Still, the chances of being attacked by a shark are very low.

However, of course we should take heed of any warning signs we see before we get into the water. After all, it is their home, not ours.

Susan, Editor

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
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