14 June 2024
Court orders New Caledonia to stop culling sharks

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In a groundbreaking decision, a court in New Caledonia has demanded an immediate end to the ruthless shark hunts. The court deemed the repeated culls as an excessive reaction to potential threats faced by swimmers, highlighting the need for a more balanced approach to coexist with these majestic creatures.

Court orders New Caledonia to stop culling sharks

 

Hey there, science enthusiasts! Today we’re going to talk about a recent court ruling in New Caledonia that has ordered the authorities to stop hunting sharks. The court stated that the multiple culls were a “disproportionate” response to any danger to swimmers. Let’s dive deeper into this topic and understand why this decision was made.

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Protecting the Beaches

 

New Caledonia, a French Pacific territory, has been working hard to protect its beaches from shark attacks. Earlier this year, there were two shark attacks, one of which resulted in the death of an Australian tourist. As a response, the territory initially banned sea bathing altogether and later installed a controversial net to keep sharks away.

 

In addition to these measures, the capital of New Caledonia, Noumea, declared open season on sharks. They conducted several campaigns of “preventative” shark hunting in the hopes of making the beaches safe again. According to an ocean-protection NGO called Longitude 181, a total of 127 sharks were killed this year – 83 tiger sharks and 44 bulldog sharks.

 

Legal Challenge and Ruling

 

An NGO called “Ensemble pour la Planete” (United for the Planet) filed a legal challenge against the shark culling policy. The court ruled in favor of the NGO, stating that the systematic culling campaigns were “disproportionate” to the threat. The court highlighted the lack of scientific studies on the targeted shark populations and the impact on the environment.

 

Additionally, the court ruled that the southern province of New Caledonia was wrong to allow Noumea city hall to kill sharks in maritime reserves where fishing is banned. The court emphasized that “limited” and “proportionate” exceptions could be made, but the shark culling program did not meet these criteria.

 

A Christmas Present for the Planet

 

The president of an NGO called “for a healthy environment” (Vagues) expressed his satisfaction with the court ruling, calling it a “lovely Christmas present for the planet.” This decision aims to protect the shark population and maintain a healthy ecosystem in New Caledonia’s waters.

 

The Mystery of the Sharks

 

It’s interesting to note that before 2010, there were no shark attacks in Noumea. However, since then, there have been 13 attacks out of a total of 32 in New Caledonia. The reason behind the sudden increase in shark numbers in the bays around Noumea, which is located about 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) east of Australia, remains a mystery.

 

Conclusion

 

The court ruling in New Caledonia to stop hunting sharks is an important step towards protecting these creatures and maintaining a balanced marine ecosystem. It reminds us of the importance of considering scientific studies and the impact on the environment when making decisions about wildlife management. Let’s continue to explore and understand our natural world in order to make informed choices that benefit both humans and the planet.

SOURCE: Court orders New Caledonia to stop culling sharks

https://phys.org/news/2023-12-court-caledonia-culling-sharks.html

FAQ’s

1. Why did the court order New Caledonia to stop culling sharks?

The court ruled that the multiple culls conducted by New Caledonia were a “disproportionate” response to the danger to swimmers. The lack of scientific studies on the targeted shark populations and the impact on the environment were also highlighted as reasons for the ruling.

2. How many sharks were killed in New Caledonia this year?

A total of 127 sharks were killed in New Caledonia this year, including 83 tiger sharks and 44 bulldog sharks.

3. Why were there shark attacks in Noumea?

Before 2010, there were no shark attacks in Noumea. However, since then, there have been 13 attacks out of a total of 32 in New Caledonia. The reason behind the sudden increase in shark numbers in the bays around Noumea remains a mystery.

4. What is the impact of the court ruling on shark populations?

The court ruling aims to protect the shark population and maintain a healthy ecosystem in New Caledonia’s waters. By stopping the culling of sharks, it ensures that these creatures are given a chance to thrive.

5. What can we learn from this court ruling?

This court ruling emphasizes the importance of considering scientific studies and the impact on the environment when making decisions about wildlife management. It serves as a reminder to make informed choices that benefit both humans and the planet.



Related Wikipedia Articles

Topics: Shark conservation, Shark attacks, New Caledonia (territory)

Shark
Sharks are a group of elasmobranch fish characterized by a cartilaginous skeleton, five to seven gill slits on the sides of the head, and pectoral fins that are not fused to the head. Modern sharks are classified within the clade Selachimorpha (or Selachii) and are the sister group to the...
Read more: Shark

Shark attack
A shark attack is an attack on a human by a shark. Every year, around 80 unprovoked attacks are reported worldwide. Despite their rarity, many people fear shark attacks after occasional serial attacks, such as the Jersey Shore shark attacks of 1916, and horror fiction and films such as the...
Read more: Shark attack

New Caledonia
New Caledonia ( KAL-ih-DOH-nee-ə; French: Nouvelle-Calédonie [nuvɛl kaledɔni] ) is a sui generis collectivity of overseas France in the southwest Pacific Ocean, south of Vanuatu, about 1,210 km (750 mi) east of Australia, and 17,000 km (11,000 mi) from Metropolitan France. The archipelago, part of the Melanesia subregion, includes the...
Read more: New Caledonia

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