New Zealand shark surfing not a violation of Animal Welfare Act

The New Zealand Herald is reporting that the recent actions seen in the “shark surfing” video do not violate New Zealand’s Animal Welfare Act, according to a spokesperson for the Ministry for Primary Industries.

The video featured a fisherman “surfing” on the carcass of a bigeye thresher shark (Alopias superciliosus) as it was being towed behind a boat. The shark had been inadvertently hooked the day before the video was shot, while the man seen in the video along with two fellow fishermen were trying to catch swordfish. The shark was already dead by the time it was pulled onto the boat, according to the fishermen. They were in the process of towing the carcass back out to sea to dispose of it, when the “surfing” video was shot.

The video sparked some controversy after it was posted to Facebook. However, since the shark had been deceased for over a day when the “surfing” incident occurred, the actions of the fisherman were not a violation of the Animal Welfare Act.

You can check out the full article at the New Zealand Herald.

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