Hearing of the call from local surfers to cull sharks in the area is as surprising as it is disturbing.
Is not this the demographic in our community that loves the ocean and all that nature has put in it?
Haven’t we been able to rely on the surfing community to be a voice for the ocean when it is under threat from the greed or carelessness of mankind?
To call for the culling of the top predators in the ocean because there are relatively frequent sightings this winter is truly shameful.
We share this planet and the ocean isn’t our natural environment. I’ve heard surfers say that enough times that I’m aghast to now hear words which effectively are ‘gee, I can’t get a wave and feel safe for a few months this winter because it’s a particularly strong run of baitfish, and the incredible ecosystem of the ocean is really pumping as a result, so let’s just kill the the sharks and then I can go for a wave’.
Unbelievable, let’s claim to love the ocean wilderness and then decide to kill the very animals who’s presence shows it is still intact.
C’mon surfers, let’s hear you standing up for the rights of all living creatures to exist in their natural habitat like you used to, especially when we’ve messed up so much of it already.
If you want to surf, and choose to do so during a particularly active baitfish winter season, or at dawn or dusk when fish are feeding (including big fish), or after rain near a river mouth, well, you’re putting yourself at risk and surely you’re all big enough to own up to that.
It’s a risky choice, but it’s your choice, and you don’t have the moral right to make the ocean and its creatures pay the price for it.
Steve Berry, Mullumbimby