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-   -   10 Tips For Avoiding Sharks While Spearfishing (plus one) (

RickI 05-14-2010 10:31 AM

10 Tips For Avoiding Sharks While Spearfishing (plus one)
So, what do you do? The easiest and most reliable way to avoid this problem is to not spearfish in the first place. You avoid adding additional stress to an already heavily taxed system with excessively harvested stocks, more spearfishermen by the month, depleted/destroyed estuaries, messed up trophic chains, reduced water quality, perhaps soon to include oil. They left this one out of the article strangely enough. It has been an obvious way to reduce the odds of negative encounters for at least a half a century of diving.

Anyway on to ...

"Story by Neil Hammerschlag

Make no mistake about it: Spearfishing can be an act of shark provocation. A speared fish sends out all the right signals—a bloody smell and stress vibrations—that sharks recognize as an “easy meal.”

If you are spearing fish, expect shark encounters. What you do next is up to you, but I offer these tips to reduce unwanted interactions and protect the safety of both spearfisher and shark:

1. Avoid being in the water alone. Several individuals may be better able to spot and deter an approaching shark.

2. Avoid wearing bright or contrasting colors. Sharks have good vision and bright and/or contrasting colors can be stimulating to these curious creatures.

3. Be conscious of your surroundings. Unusually high marine life activity (fish, marine mammals, birds) may indicate a concentrated food source like a bait ball that can draw in hunting and stimulated sharks. Conversely, if all the fish in an area immediately disappear, a hunting shark may have just arrived. Check your surroundings and cautiously exit the water.

4. Sharks may frequent particular feeding areas so avoid areas where and when shark encounters have occurred in the past or where sharks have been seen recently.

5. Avoid spearfishing in murky water as it may be difficult for you to spot a shark and easier for a shark to mistake you for a potential prey item. Many sharks hunt during dawn and dusk so don’t spearfish during these periods."

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