Protea Banks is a world renowed shark dive site in Shelly Beach on the east coast of South Africa.
Divers from all continents come to enjoy the thrill and beauty of diving with a variety of sharks which includes Tiger sharks (Galeocerdo Cuvier), Zambezi / Bull sharks (Carcharhinus Leucas), Great and Scalloped Hammerheads (Sphyrna Mokarran and Sphyrna Lewini), Oceanic Blacktips (Carcharhinus Limbatus), Dusky sharks (Carcharhinus Obscurus), Bronze Whalers/ Copper sharks (Carcharhinus Brachyurus), Sandtigers/Spotted ragged tooth/Grey Nurse sharks (Carcharias Taurus) and Giant Guitar sharks (Rhynchobatus Djiddensis)
We understand that fishing is a sport and that the majority of the anglers in our area either practise catch and release or only catch species which are sustainable. However there are instances in which vulnerable sharks are caught and killed. We have recently become aware of fishing charters which have taken the shark's heads as a trophy. It is our intention with this petition to ensure that the vulnerable shark species have better protection so as to ensure their survival against trophy hunting.
Local divers have witnessed the decline in shark sightings, especially Tiger and Zambezi/Bull sharks, despite the effort of trying to educate and inform the greater public of the negative effects on the eco-system and tourism. Sharks play a vital role in the balance of the world's oceans and on the reef systems they occupy.
The tide is turning for shark conservation efforts. Hammerhead sharks (genus: Sphyrnidae),Porbeagle sharks (Lamna Nasus) and Oceanic White Tip sharks (Carcharhinus Longimanus) are now afforded some protection under CITES. The current legislation in South Africa only protects Great White sharks (Carcharadon Carcharias), Basking sharks (Cetorhinus Maximus) and Whale sharks ( Rhinocodon Typus) but other vulnerable species such as the Zambezi/Bull and Tiger sharks are prone to sport fishing and the restrictions placed on commercial fishing is hard to police. Sharks are in a desperate situation and protection in South Africa will start to change perceptions of sharks.
Sharks do not have a voice, your signature here will give them one.....before they are silenced forever.