The effectiveness of shark nets has again been questioned after two hammerheads were filmed inside nets at the country’s most famous beach.
Footage posted to Instagram on Monday by Drone Shark App founder Jason Iggleden reveals two sharks moving through waters off Bondi. At times the aerial video captured the pair circling each other.
“Two hammerhead sharks inside the shark nets at Bondi Beach this morning,” he wrote online. “Great to see they diverted the nets safely.”
“There were no swimmers in the area as it was just before sunrise,” he added.
It is understood the sharks were safely chased further out to sea by Bondi Lifeguards. A day earlier and the situation would have been more alarming with thousands hitting the water for the iconic Bondi to Bronte swim.
Shark footage highlights nets being 'ineffective'
Many praised Jason, who named one of the sharks as a well-known local called Homer, for sharing the footage and a vital lesson. “Good job getting this message out!” one person wrote. “So important to debunk the ‘barrier’ myth.” The footage has raised questions about the effectiveness of nets.
“The fact these two were spotted on the beach-side of the net shows how outdated and ineffective this measure is,” Dr Leonardo Guida, a shark scientist and conservationist at the Australian Marine Conservation Society told Nine News.
Earlier this year, the mayor of Waverley called for the nets to be removed saying they “create a false sense of safety.” But the bid was ultimately rejected by the NSW government.
As part of the state’s shark meshing program, specially designed nets have been installed along 51 beaches from Newcastle to Wollongong. Measuring around 150 metres long, six metres high and set at a depth of about 10 metres, they are in place from September to April each year, Nine News reported.
While the government says they are not designed to create a total barrier between bathers and sharks, it insists they are helpful in deterring sharks from establishing territories, thereby reducing the odds of a shark encounter.
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