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March 2016    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Vol. 31, No. 3   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Outrage over Shark Dives in New Zealand and A Call for Cayman to Allow Shark Dives

from the March, 2016 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

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In the Cayman Islands, the discussion about whether to allow shark diving there is warming up. Guy Harvey is one of the dive industry vets calling on the government to consider licensing dive operators to run shark interaction dives, saying it could be a boost to the island's economy, raise awareness of shark conservation and create a financial incentive to protect the species.

Steve Broadbelt, owner of Ocean Frontiers, used to run shark interaction dives before they were banned in 2002. He told the Cayman Compass there are legitimate concerns about sharks associating divers and boats with food, but there are well-established protocols in other areas to mitigate this risk. "Cayman is at a significant disadvantage by not permitting shark dives. We have always had a healthy population of sharks on the East End of Grand Cayman and in some other areas around the destination. We lose a lot of business to the Bahamas specifically due to the shark diving that is offered there . . . There are industry-wide standards and best practices on shark feeding that must be followed and have a proven safety track record."...

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