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Australia Seeks to Curb Shark Attacks
International, 10/1/2015

Australia prepares for the launching of its high tourist season, which is threatened by the increase in shark attacks. According to the Australian state premier, Mike Baird, just off the coast of New South Wales, which consist of more than 2,000 kilometers, 13 swimmers and surfers have been attacked by sharks in 2015 against only three in 2014, an "unprecedented" increase.

Their government has attended an international meeting with experts in science and technology to provide new systems that immediately detects early arrival of the animals to the coast. Ideas are also being sought to achieve deter sharks attacking swimmers. In the last two years nine people have died because of these attacks.

Among the technologies to deter, experts propose installing underground electrical barriers that would feed for wave energy devices and lead positions swimmers and surfers. The company Shark Shield designed a device with the same name ("shark shield") to be fixed in the ankle and emits an electric field that interacts with a gelatinous blister on the snouts of sharks to provoke spasms. The device has been tested by the University of Western Australia, confirming its effects waiting to hear more about how it impacts on some species of sharks.

Other proposed solution suggests extending a barrier rigid nylon able to resist the force of ocean currents. Some experts prefer fine mesh nets, which are harmful to coral seabed. The creation of electrical barriers is also valued: his defender, Geremy Cliff, a marine biologist, believes that it may be a solution, but acknowledged that its development is still precarious.

The meeting also discussed the shark detection technologies, such as the Clever Buoy system ("smart beacon"), which sends signals to a satellite indicating the animal proximity to the coast.

Other researchers have proposed swimwear for surfers that color blind sharks, confusing them with the seabed.

The government is also supporting local scientists to take stock of recent discoveries worldwide. It is the case of Daryl McPhee, a marine biologist at the University of Bond. Speaking to Agence France Presse, he said that "sharks have seven senses. We do not know how they perceive their environment, but we know much more [about it] now than ten years ago. Now we can use technology to design better technologies deterrence ". Ultimately, the cause of increased attacks by these animals is unknown.



Topic(s):    Biodiversity