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March 2017    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Vol. 32, No. 3   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Kill ’em but Don’t Feed ’em?

a campaign to ban shark feeding!

from the March, 2017 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

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Should shark feeding by divers be banned in federal waters? John L. Russell thinks so and even started his own Association in order to pursue his obsession.

Way back in 2002, after a spate of shark bites on swimmers along the panhandle coast of Florida, the State government, driven by the powerful angling lobby, banned shark feeding (by divers) for the purpose of observing sharks, rather than just for harvesting them. So Jim Abernethy's Scuba Adventures with his vessel Shear Water, along with other operators out of Fort Lauderdale, relocated their activities to the nearby Bahamas -- hence the ongoing reputation of dive sites like Tiger Beach, this month's feature article. These operators use bait or chum to attract sharks so their customers can get an up-close and personal encounter.

Other operators simply headed out beyond Florida's waters. Randy Jordan with Emerald Dive Charters (Jupiter) and Calypso Dive Charters (Lake Park) are notable among those doing so, but Russell, of the impressively named Florida Association of Diving Instructors, the self-styled "Shark Detective," is trying to stop them. For some years Russell has been actively fighting for a bill to be introduced in Congress that would make all shark feeding by divers illegal. ...


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