Anglers in Florida will soon have more restrictions for shark fishing from shore. This week the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission voted unanimously to draw up restrictions on fishing sharks from land, rather than a boat.
The source for change is twofold. Scientists warn that the process of dragging the sharks ashore for trophy photos reduces their chances of survival upon release. The safety of the fishermen is also of concern, as the process of landing large sharks on land can be considerably riskier.
The restrictions have yet to be determined, but they could include a mandated special license for the activity, limitations on equipment, or guidelines on handling the sharks. The decorum of shore-based shark fishermen is of special concern for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission. Images of people holding the jaws of animals open while stranded on the beach are common.
“Some of those pictures that were shown on social media were disgraceful,” FFWCC Commissioner Joshua Kellam told The Sun Sentinel. “I think it’s a disgrace to the animal, it’s a disgrace to our wildlife, so I think that just morally people should be ashamed of themselves to post stuff like that, to do that stuff to animals. People who do these things should be punished for their actions.”
Learn more about the proposed changes, here.
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