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October 2017    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Available to the Public Vol. 43, No. 10   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Stuart Cove Guide Fired for Pummeling a Shark

from the October, 2017 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

When a video footage of a nurse shark being repeatedly punched by a shark-feeder during a shark dive operated by Stuart Cove's Dive Bahamas went viral on social media during the last days of September, people went nuts, as you would expect -- and hope. One response was:

"All this acrobatic shark 'tonic' crap that really doesn't 'change people's perceptions' is just an excuse to 'show off' and get attention ... The guy in this video is @gnarly_neal who loves all the 'wow' stuff but has just plummeted to an all time low with what's seen in this video ... those nurse sharks are there because YOU'RE baiting and they're hungry, and those sharks, amongst others are generating money which in turn pays your bills, the least you can do is respect them ... Ecotourism has soooo many benefits I don't want to smother the good with the nasty, overly aggressive acts like these ... People need to see reality, people need to publicly acknowledge their mistakes, and people need to be held accountable. This isn't about pain, it's about RESPECT."

Undercurrent contacted Stuart Cove for a comment and he replied, "This employee was immediately dismissed from my company. Under no circumstance has this or will this behavior ever be tolerated in my business. We have a strict protocol when it comes to our shark-feeders. Their training is highly supervised and held to the highest standards. It was to my disgrace that one of my own employees could act in such a manner ... This disturbing video has only encouraged me to work harder and more aggressively in the protection of sharks around the world."

As one might expect from Stuart, he reacted quickly and properly. Here's the video.

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