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August 2013    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Vol. 28, No. 8   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Subscribers Speak up about Shark Feeding

the results? Seems to be split down the middle

from the August, 2013 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

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John Bantin, who makes more dives in a year than many of us make in a lifetime, wrote a commentary in our July issue about shark baiting and feeding, and why if divers want to see sharks, then there's nothing wrong with either. We asked readers for their opinions, and whether they agree, or don't with Bantin.

Many readers who've seen shark feedings say they don't have problems with them. While all the negative talk in the past about feeding sharks made Rob Gadbois (Chicago, IL) hesitant to watch a shark feeding on a Great Barrier Reef trip aboard Mike Ball's Spoilsport last November, he wrote "I enjoyed the hell out of it, so maybe I have changed my mind a little. The event was thoroughly professional. We had to line up along a circular wall and remain in place during the feeding. The white-tip sharks started gathering around; they knew the routine. Our divemaster pulled a large metal barrel full of tuna parts down from the boat and swam with it toward us, with the sharks following him. The divemaster attached the barrel to a mooring, then he used a pole to flip open the latch, and the sharks went at it. The fish snacks didn't last long, and the white-tip sharks departed shortly after. Done in a controlled manner such as this without direct interaction between diver and shark, I couldn't see the harm in it. Sure, the sharks know the routine, but it happens infrequently and in only one place. I am not sure it significantly alters their general feeding behavior with that one small snack."...

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