A state-of-the-art shark listening station has been installed at Lennox Headland beach but it will only provide updates on the movements of previously tagged sharks.
The purpose built listening station will form ‘an important part of the state’s integrated shark management strategy,’ according to north coast Nationals MLC Ben Franklin.
‘Real time information will now be made available immediately via the department of primary industries website and to Surf Life Saving NSW and other relevant groups to provide current information on the movements of the tagged sharks,’ Mr Franklin said.
‘As soon as a tagged shark swims within about 500 metres of a listening station, an alert will be issued with its location.
‘Though there is no one solution to this issue – the listening station will go a long way in better informing us about if and where sharks are along our coastline.
‘This Government is committed to better protecting beachgoers, we know the community wants action – that’s why we are using some of the world’s best scientists, and new and emerging technologies to better protect our beachgoers.’
‘Our region relies on the tourism that our beaches attract; we want to ensure that we’re taking any measures we can to keep beachgoers safe.’
A total of 20 listening stations are being deployed at beaches along the NSW coastline, as part of the NSW Government’s $16 million Shark Management Strategy.
An alternative program called Shark Spotters, based on the success of the South African program of the same name, is being promoted by the groups No Shark Cull and Sea Shepherd.
The program has not received state government funding and the group was forced to resort to crowd funding to bring Shark Spotter representatives to Australia to discuss their program with communities heavily affected by sharks.
They will be discussing their model at Ballina on Thursday March 17, on the dunes behind Shelley Beach from 6.30pm.