This Is What You Think About The Shark Crisis: Results May Shock You

3 Nov 2016 16

COASTALWATCH | LATEST NEWS

AUSTRALIA’S MOST COMPREHENSIVE SHARK SURVEY RESULTS ARE IN

WE ASKED AUSTRALIA’S SURFERS WHAT THEY THOUGHT SHOULD BE DONE ABOUT THE SHARK CRISIS IN NORTHERN NSW:

On 12th October 2016, Coastalwatch published a survey to gauge the mindset of the public in response to the shark attack from at Lighthouse beach in September, and their Live Broadcast Discussion held in Ballina. We found that social media was cluttered with polarising voices on the issue and we wanted to help our community and the Government, understand the true nature of their opinions. 2 more people were attacked by sharks prior to final result and Nick Carroll’s fact based story on shark nets.

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The survey results more than doubled between 21st October and 1st November 2016 coinciding with the second shark attack at Broken Head as well as the Baird Government’s announcement about the nets trial to go ahead. 

4596 Survey Responders published on Coastalwatch.com

66% NSW - tallies with the 66% people who would consider buying a personal shark deterrent
24% QLD
5% VIC
3% WA
2% International
0% SA or TAS

*This was an anonymous survey with no way of identifying respondents.
*309 Comments on Coastalwatch in association with this issue, including the survey.

QUESTION - What is your answer to the shark crisis in Northern NSW? (Respondents would only select one answer)

21% Nothing right now: continue to work on finding a non-threatening marine-safe alternative
42% Shark Nets
24% Shark Cull
13% Personal Shark Deterrents

*Numbers supporting the first option significantly decreased after the attack on 24th October

*It is obvious that there was personal interest involved in this response that was NSW including regional NSW (North Coast) with a significantly small response from WA and no response from SA and TAS, where in the past there have been many shark encounters (fatal & non-fatal) - Neither of these states have nets in place so we believe they didn’t believe they had a stake in contributing to these questions.

*Coastalwatch was surprised by the large response supporting a shark cull in comparison to the non-threatening alternative. It demonstrates how frightened people are by what is happening in the Northern NSW region.

QUESTION - Would you consider buying a personal shark deterrent?

66% YES
34% NO

*It’s very telling in this response, the correlation between the number of people who said yes in this question and how many answered from NSW (also 66%)

*This answer is despite no personal shark deterrent being widely available in the market at the moment. (Shark Shield - launched to media 25/10 & Modom Shark Leash - available since early 2016 but not commonly available)

*This response also shows the fear instilled in people and their willingness to purchase a product without any, or little information available.

COASTALWATCH EDITORIAL COVERAGE OF THE SHARK CRISIS

*Take the NSW Department Of Primary Industries Survey now available here

*VIDEO BELOW, Shark Attack First Aid, Video by Terra Australis

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