Illegal fishing: A Reef Shark died after being trapped in a fishing net within the protected Tunku Abdul Rahman Park, off Kota Kinabalu.

Malaysia: Killed in a protected park
By Muguntan Vanar, 7th February 2016;

A picture of a Blacktip Reef Shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus) killed by fishing nets within the protected Tunku Abdul Rahman Park has sparked calls for immediate action to restrict fishing within the marine park.

In describing the incident as appalling, Sabah Shark Protection Association (SSPA) president Aderick Chong said steps must be taken against fishing in the protected area as it was an offence under the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park Enactment 1984.

He said the offenders should face the full brunt of the law, which provides for a one-year imprisonment, a fine not exceeding RM20,000 or both for first-time offenders, while repeat offenders could face double the fine or jail time or both.

“It is disheartening to see these pictures of dead sharks that must have struggled for their lives when they were caught in these nets. Furthermore, it is believed that the nets were from illegal fishing activities within the marine park,” Chong said in a statement.

He thanked Downbelow Marine and Wildlife Adventures for highlighting the issue and its immediate steps to work with Sabah Parks to clear the fishing nets discovered in the marine park.

“The result of this active collaboration has resulted in releasing live creatures including sharks and rays. We are also pleased to hear that the net from this incident has been completely removed,” said Chong whose association spearheaded a campaign to ban shark hunting and finning in Sabah.

SSPA consists of the Malaysian Nature Society (Sabah branch), Marine Conservation Society (MCS), Shark, Education, Awareness and Survival (SEAS), Scubazoo, Tropical Research and Conservation Centre (TRACC), WWF-Malaysia, Shark Stewards and Land Empowerment Animals People (LEAP).

Tunku Abdul Rahman park manager Justinus Guntabid said they were taking steps to prevent this case from recurring.

Source: The Star

Malaysia: Calls to restrict fishing in Sabah marine park after picture of dead shark surfaces

By Muguntan Vanar, 6th February 2016;

A picture of a Blacktip Reef Shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus) killed by fishing nets within the protected Tunku Abdul Rahman Park has sparked calls for immediate action to restrict fishing within the marine park.

In describing the incident as “appalling”, Sabah Shark Protection Association (SSPA) president Aderick Chong said action must be taken against those fishing in the protected area as it is an offence under the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park Enactment 1984.

He said that first-time offenders could be imprisoned one year or fined not exceeding RM20,000 or both while repeat offenders could face double the fine or jail or both.

“It is disheartening to see these pictures of dead sharks that must have struggled for their lives when they were caught in these nets,” Chong said in a statement.

“Sharks’ natural slow growth rate will further diminish the already threatened shark populations in Malaysia. Not only will it create an imbalance in our marine ecosystem, shark deaths result in a revenue loss to the country,” Chong added.

Tunku Abdul Rahman Park Manager Justinus Guntabid said that they were working to prevent the issue from recurring.

Chong thanked Downbelow Marine and Wildlife Adventures for highlighting the issue and its immediate steps to work with Sabah Parks to clear the fishing nets discovered in the marine park,

“The result of this active collaboration has resulted in releasing live creatures including sharks and rays. We are also pleased to hear that the net from this incident has been completely removed,” said Chong whose association is spearheading a campaign to ban shark hunting and finning in Sabah.

He hoped that preventive measures are implemented through joint surveillance by the dive centres, Sabah Fisheries & Fishing Trawlers Association, as well as Sabah Parks, to combat the destructive consequences of illegal fishing activities in Sabah.

A scientific study of sharks in the Semporna region carried out by the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) in 2012 valued a single living shark in Sabah’s waters at US$815,000 to Sabah in terms of tourism revenue, compared with US$100 for its fins.

“Considering AIMS’ recent survey, a total of three dead sharks would be equivalent to a loss of approximately US$2.5 million to Sabah,” Chong added.

Source: The Star

Malaysia: Calls to restrict fishing in Sabah marine park after picture of dead shark surfaces

Richard was diving with some old friends James & Ev recently & the dive turned into a mass attack on a very tricky & sadly dstructive net but we are delighted to say we got it all 🙂

The illegally discarded net was snagged on the reef at one of our favourite Blacktip Reef Shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus) dive sites.

Multiple juvenile sharks were entangled & needlessly perrished but we did manage to release some live marine life.

The current was running which made the removal exhausting but fortunately our divers (all instructors) joined in so we finally managed to bring it all up.

Divers please carry a knife & remove marine debris whenever you can but remember please take care and stay with your buddy as entanglement can be a real safety issue!

Big thanks to Nunuk James Matthews & Evelyn V Matthews for their help 🙂

Source: Richard Swann Facebook