Suffering grey nurse shark triggers distress on social media

AN image posted by a Byron Bay dive company showing a grey nurse shark with a large rope tied around its tale has sparked distress on social media.

Byron Scuba diving company Sundive has posted a photo of the shark, which was taken yesterday by Mark Gray, on its Facebook page saying it appeared the rope appeared to have been around the tail of the 2.5m grey nurse for a long time.

"Looks like the rope is quite thick and has been there for a while," Mr Gray said in the post.

"Image taken on a fisheye lens and had to be cropped and enhanced in B&W as the animal did not allow closer inspection.

Photo I took on todays dive showing a 2.5m Grey Nurse (female) with rope that has been tied around the base of its tail....

Posted by Sundive Byron Bay on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

"Would like to know the story behind people tying up (grey nurse sharks) ... (possible fishermen to remove gear from a hooked animal?)."

One person commenting on the post said sharks were often tied that way to kill them.

"Sharks are tied up by the tail when caught if they are too large and alive/energetic/bitey to handle and pull on board the boat, so the fishermen tie them by the tail and drag them backwards behind the boat to drown them," commented Kerryn Doupain.

"Poor shark, that would make swimming such an effort."

"Such a beautiful animal," commented Kylie Frost. "Sad to see her swimming with that rope, wherever it has come from." 

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