Pew Environment Group has released a video of Honduran law officials burning a pile of illegal shark fins, while Honduran president, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, watched. President Lobo Sosa declared Honduran waters as a shark sanctuary last year. The burning of the illegal fins, which were primarily fins from nurse sharks (Ginglymostoma cirratum), was intended to symbolize Honduras’ commitment to enforcing shark protection laws.
CNN’s American Morning ran a segment today around 8:30am EST about the 9 shark attack survivors who are lobbying for the U.S. Congress to support a bill aimed at ending shark finning. The segment featured two of the survivors who spoke about their attacks, and their feelings about sharks after having survived their ordeals. While surfer Mike Coots said he never had any animosity, Debbie Alamone said that it took her a while to get over her animosity. Both are now working with the Pew Environment Group to lobby for a bill that would ban finning. Both survivors stressed the importance of sharks in the marine ecosystem. Coots ended the interview portion of the segment by stating that the issue was “way bigger than the two of us. It’s absolutely incredible, just the amount of sharks being killed.”
A transcript of the interview portion of the segment can be found at CNN’s AM Fix blog. The interview portion of the segment was well done. Unfortunately, as soon as the attack survivors were off camera, CNN anchor John Roberts started in saying how it was “hard to swallow” that shark attack survivors would be lobbying for the protection of sharks. Robert’s co-anchor, whose name escapes me (Kiran Chentry was not on during the segment) then stated that she doesn’t go in the ocean due to her “unnatural” fear of being attacked by a shark. Roberts then brought up Jaws and how he was afraid to swim even in a lake after seeing the film.
If nothing else, at least another story exposing the finning industry is appearing in the main stream media.
A full press release from the Pew Environmental Group on the subject is available at Pew Brings Survivors to Congress to Seek Protections for Sharks That Attacked Them from PR Newswire.