tomkaz

"Should beach-based shark fishing be banned in Florida?"

29 posts in this topic

I have no problem with RESPONSIBLE shore-based shark fishing. I know Josh Jorgensen personally for years and I have fishing from both sand and boat with him. He is as responsible as they come when it comes to the ethical treatment of caught sharks. SOL's zcoker is another "expert" shore-based shark angler who knows how to do it right. 

 

But there are yahoos out there and there is maltreatment of caught sharks so this concern being raised is not without enough evidence to make it a worthwhile discussion. 

 

I dont know Kimberly Miller but I think she’s a weather reporter for the PB Post, or they just decided to post this article with a "weather" tag in it. Either way, I have two issues with her reportage. 

 

First, there is NO evidence that the washed up dead tiger shark with a hook in its mouth was related to shore-based anglers. None, yet it is used in this article as an example of shark mortality due to shore-based fishing. 

 

Second, the biologist from Vancouver talks about mortality and combs social media for fish-handling abuses yet offers no evidence that dead sharks are washing up at an accelerating rate due to fishing pressures. If the tiger shark mentioned was supposedly dead because of such near-shore angling, why aren't there reports of dozens of such washed up corpses? Sure, they could sink and be eaten by other sharks before they can wash up, but that can’t happen in every instance, can it? 

 

I will be at the Palm Beach meeting later in the month. I will post the schedule of other meetings across the state in a minute. 

 

Should beach-based shark fishing be banned in Florida?

By Kimberly Miller - Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

 

For generations, average Joe anglers cast their lines from Florida’s sandy shores hoping to land one of the ocean’s most ancient creatures, furtive shadows thrumming with power and intrigue.

 

But the state is taking a closer look at the loosely regulated sport of beach-based shark fishing as concerns mount about hooked sharks being dragged onto the sand, their snouts lifted for photo shoots, gills desiccating in the air and organs crushed under their own weight.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is holding meetings statewide this month, including in West Palm Beach on Aug. 28, to hear suggestions for new rules to govern shark fishing from land.

 

 

It’s a passionate topic for a state whose economy is well bolstered by fishing and diving.

 

“A lot of people love catching big fish, and the shark is just one of the biggest in the ocean,” said Josh Jorgensen, a Palm Beach County resident who founded the Blacktip Challenge tournament. “It’s the top of the food chain. It’s catching the ultimate predator.”

 

While most shark fishermen release their catch, conservationists fear survival rates are low after a shark is hooked and pulled ashore. This is especially true for protected sharks and those that are more fragile, such as the hammerhead.

 

Several fishing groups support the creation of some new rules, including banning shark fishing near swimming beaches, but others fear over-regulation will kill a sport that would become out of reach for anyone who can’t afford to do it from a boat.

 

“The reality in fishing is fish die,” said Jorgensen, who runs the Youtube channel BlacktipH. “Should we ban all fishing because some fish die?”

 

Struggling at the end of a fisherman’s line, a shark’s body goes into survival overdrive. Deadly amounts of lactic acid build in muscles that can become so fatigued they just stop working. Even if released, the shark can sink to the bottom of the ocean and suffocate, according to shark experts.

 

If a large shark is hauled onto a beach for a trophy picture, its motionless tail no longer helps pump blood to its small heart. Capillaries on its belly burst, turning white flesh to a rose pink. Internal organs hemorrhage under the crush of gravity where sea water once buoyed its weight.

 

“Any great hammerhead dragged onto a beach where someone stops to take a photo, that’s almost certainly a dead shark. It won’t survive,” said R. Dean Grubbs, associate director of research for Florida State University’s Coastal and Marine Laboratory. “You can release them and maybe you think they are in good shape, but a few hours to days later, they die.”

 

In Florida state waters, which extend 3 miles from shore, 26 shark species are protected, including the hammerhead and tiger shark. That means if they are caught by a shore-based fisherman, they shouldn’t be taken out of the water, or have their release delayed to take pictures.

 

Pictures are allowed, but they must be taken while the shark is in the process of being released.

 

David Shiffman, a marine biologist studying sharks at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, said that’s not always happening.

 

He and three other researchers analyzed 1,256 posts from a shark fishing chat room and found a “minimum of dozens of illegal shark fishing practices.” His findings are outlined in a 2017 report published in the peer-reviewed journal Fisheries Research.

 

While many anglers are conservation-minded, Shiffman said several were unaware of the rules regarding protected shark species, or they knew about them but broke them anyway.

 

“It’s macho cowboy behavior,” Shiffman said. “Years of outreach and education and gentle talking has not been enough.”

Video: South Florida man bit by shark, catches shark, says he’ll eat it

 

Shiffman’s suggestions include cutting the line as soon as a fisherman realizes a hammerhead is hooked, leaving protected sharks in deep enough water that their gills are submerged, and limiting areas where shark fishing can occur. Other suggestions include requiring special permits for shore-based shark fishing and restricting baiting water near swimmers. FWC officials said people are particularly concerned about shark fishing near popular beaches, but that there is no “credible evidence that the presence of fishing activity increases the occurrence of nearby shark bites.”

 

Everyone agrees social media increased the awareness about beach-based shark fishing, including the circulation of photos that may be disturbing or show illegal practices.

 

“Some people are very concerned when they see someone reeling in a large animal where they were just swimming,” said Gary Jennings, director of the Keep Florida Fishing Initiative with the American Sportfishing Association. “Occasionally, unfortunately, some animals die and obviously people don’t like seeing a shark washing up on the beach.”

 

That happened last year in May when a 400-pound tiger shark washed up dead north of the Juno Beach Pier with a large hook in its jaw. The sight of the impressive fish lolling in the surf break with curious dogs sniffing at its corpse was shared multiple times, upsetting some conservationists.

 

Two months later, a video of a shark being violently dragged behind a speeding boat on the west coast of Florida circulated on social media. It led to animal cruelty charges against three men.

 

“There’s a difference between going deer hunting on the weekends with your dad and traveling to Africa to hunt the last rhino,” Shiffman said. “I want to stress that most anglers are rule abiding and care about the environment, but there is a very intense group that think they are going to do whatever they want.”

 

For more information on the issue of land-based shark fishing go to www.myfwc.com. The West Palm Beach meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Aug. 28 at the Palm Beach County Department of Planning and Zoning, 2300 N. Jog Road.

 

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Shore-based Shark Fishing Public Workshops

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) needs your input on future management of the shore-based shark fishery. The FWC is hosting several public workshops on this topic throughout the state. Share your input by attending one of these workshops.

View the workshop presentation  Adobe PDF

Workshops will begin at 6 p.m. local time (print the workshop flier Adobe PDF):

  • August 6: Panama City, Gulf Coast State College, The Russell C. Holley and Herbert P. Holley Language and Literature Building, Sarzin Lecture Hall, 5230 West US Highway 98
  • August 7: Pensacola, Sanders Beach-Corinne Jones Resource Center – Parks & Recreation Department, City of Pensacola, 913 South I Street
  • August 20: Daytona Beach, Piggotte Community Center, Reception Hall Room, 504 Big Tree Road
  • August 21: Jacksonville, Jacksonville University, J. Henry Gooding Building – Gooding Auditorium, 2800 University Blvd. North (see map External Website)
  • August 27: UPDATED VENUE, Melbourne Beach, Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, 200 Rialto Place 
  • August 28: West Palm Beach, Palm Beach County, Department of Planning, Zoning & Building – The Vista Center, 2300 North Jog Road
  • August 29: Miami, Miami City Hall – Commission Main Chambers, 3500 Pan American Drive
  • August 30: Key Colony Beach, City Hall, 600 W. Ocean Drive

If you can’t attend an in-person workshop, you may submit comments online by visiting MyFWC.com/SaltwaterComments.

Previous shark-fishing from shore workshops were hosted in the following locations.

  • July 18: Bradenton
  • July 19: Ft. Myers

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Leave everything as it is. The sharks are still there with a hook in the water or not. 

 

Its amazing how ignorant individuals are to believe a shark is only around and close to them if a fisherman is involved. Fisherman distance themselves as it is from swimmers. No one wants to have a swimmer get a hook in them. 

 

I had a small hammerhead come under my kayak in a pass. The water was 9’ deep where I was. It passed right by people and dogs swimming in the pass. This pass is by far not exactly wide. With no current you’d be able to swim it well under 3 mins.

 

people are stupid just stay on land and don’t put your feet in the water. Maybe next we need lifeguards to us the wind is blowing hard and the water is ok or not to swim in. 

 

I had a couple tell me a few weeks ago that they saw a shark and it’s big. Look over there it’s big. Yes you could see a fin. I said, well this is florida afterall and sharks are all around here. I launched the kayak and paddled right over to the fin. I could just imagine their comments as I did this. I was right on top of it. It was a dolphin, Christ you could see that from a long distance. I had no reason to tell them that prior to me launching. People should just educate themselves. 

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Posted (edited)

First of all, the FWC has NO INTENTIONS to ban land based shark fishing. I was personally invited to sit down with the FWC Commissioners, and one of the first things said by Commissioner Sole to me was: "we have no intentions of banning this activity." I can only believe what I was told from the horses mouth because these are the men who make the final decisions. The logic behind their endeavors is to come up with draft regulations to regulate the sport to promote positive outcomes, which I helped outline for them.

 

Now, these reporters run with anything that they can get their hands on. I've heard of this Miller chic. I think I've spoken with her a few times. What gets me is the fact that land based shark fishing just doesn't happen that often. It's almost absurd to regulate it, like a moot point. In relation to fishing in general, the general fishing population from the shore, land based shark fishing is but a very small fraction, a very tiny, tiny, tiny fraction, almost a foregone conclusion. Go to ANY beach right now in the ENTIRE state of Florida and find someone shark fishing.....few and far between. In fact, I've taken the FWC SHARK FISHING MYSELF! I showed them how it's done, showed them how the public responds in positive ways, showed them the entire beach, as far as the eye could see, without a single shark fishermen on it but us. When they saw this reality with their own eyes, they now have a realistic sense of what they are actually dealing with instead of a lot of emotionally charged BS, which is why I took them out. 

 

Anyhow, a few dead sharks, here and there, and they all go bat crazy, these reporters. Sure got their priorities right when thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of fish are dead on the west coast becasue of that gutter lake O....why don't these friggin reporters jump on that ban wagon?????????????????? Shaking my head here LoL.

 

And that big Tiger shark that washed up on Juno Beach in May, it was caught by a bunch of guys. How do I know this? Because I was there, just north of where it was caught, fishing with my son. It was a horrid night, windy as all hell, huge waves, I had just (somehow) taken a bait out when I saw all the commotion south of me. Got my binoculars out and watched the whole show. They were trying to get a big 24/0 Catch All circle hook out of that fish's mouth. They worked on it for a long while, and that's what killed it, in my opinion.

 

DB66BAA3-7657-4C3B-BF06-964FA41B0E08.JPG.8fc02f6adbb562ab523a39802f474e59.JPG

 

 

Precisely why I always preach "THE LITTLE THINGS". Because anything in the tackle design that facilitates a rapid release of a landed shark greatly ensures the sharks survival, things like a BARBLESS hook. If they had used a barbless hook that night on that specific shark, that Tiger would still be swimming today because the hook would've been out in a matter of seconds instead of them prying at it for five or more minutes!

 

And this absurdity about sharks dying in general because they are captured and released is pure BS. How do I know this? What data do I have? Because I have captured and tagged HUNDREDS of sharks and not a single fatality has been reported to NOAA, including the tag number on that monster hammerhead captured off Singer Island, which the media is STILL squawking about!! That same damn story was featured on friggin Shark Week by the Discovery Channel last week....you'd think they'd get my consent for airing that...they just won't let that story die. Kinda sick of it, sure am. Anyhow, all tag numbers on all my sharks would identify (me) as the person who tagged them. NOAA would alert me for any fatality or capture reported.

 

Lot of these negative one sided stories stem from Mr. David Shiffman, anyway, some biologist with his paper were he dredged up and spooned out everything into neat little piles of crap. He based most everything on shark forums, hearsay and photographs of guys with their sharks. He said, "look at all these sharks out of the water! They're crushing them!", "look at all these guys posing with their captured sharks!"

 

Well, well, well, what the heck is this, Mr. Shiffman, why it's a picture of YOU with your girlfriend or whatever with a shark completely out of the water with a pole rammed down it's throat while you two SIT on it to get your sweet money shot. Enough said! LoL.

 

IMG_0272.JPG.ca604ffeb4053616dc3dce3f71e678c7.JPG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by zcoker

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Great post by Zcoker.  Not a shark fisherman myself but a condensed version of what was just posted would be:  Don't these people have more important things to worry about?

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Thanks Z. Great contribution. Are you planning on going to the WPB meeting? Want to get dinner beforehand, on me? 

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Try not catching a shark on the beach. I was fishing for drum with my son and he got a 3.5 foot blacktip. I catch sharks when fishing for blues and whiting, proportional to the offering.

i don’t purposely fish for them anymore, I got rid of my shark gear. But I can’t convince sharks not to bite on my non-shark fishing gear. Until that problem is solved, shark fishing cannot practically be banned.

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16 mins ago, tomkaz said:

Thanks Z. Great contribution. Are you planning on going to the WPB meeting? Want to get dinner beforehand, on me? 

Hey Tom, sure, let's meet up. Yes, I will be going. Most of these meetings have had little turnout (shark anglers). FWC contacted me last week (can't seem to shake them Lol) for some help/suggestions with media coverage for these workshops. Few guys showed up on west coast; most of them were from here...east coast. This area (east coast) is more the epicenter of shark fishing, so I forecast a much higher turnout in West Palm.

 

Hope all is well with you!

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Just wanted to say thanks for the great post zcoker.  Very interesting stuff!

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21 mins ago, fishhappy said:

Try not catching a shark on the beach. I was fishing for drum with my son and he got a 3.5 foot blacktip. I catch sharks when fishing for blues and whiting, proportional to the offering.

i don’t purposely fish for them anymore, I got rid of my shark gear. But I can’t convince sharks not to bite on my non-shark fishing gear. Until that problem is solved, shark fishing cannot practically be banned.

 

So true! I've had so many shark encounters fishing for blues and other species from the surf. One time during the mullet run, I couldn't keep the sharks off a friggin spoon!

 

This whole shark fishing fiasco is so utterly blown out of proportion. I can tell you this: the FWC Commissioners did not want to even touch this subject with a ten foot pole. They felt (and still do) that their Smart Shark outline on their webpage was good enough. They favored what they already had outlined for shore based shark fishing, an educational approach...and that's it.

 

Media pressure abound, the FWC Commissioners felt "obligated" or "backed into a corner" to do something. Politically correct? Maybe so. That's why they voted to have Staff gather public input at these various workshops.

 

 

 

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On ‎8‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 7:56 PM, zcoker said:

First of all, the FWC has NO INTENTIONS to ban land based shark fishing. I was personally invited to sit down with the FWC Commissioners, and one of the first things said by Commissioner Sole to me was: "we have no intentions of banning this activity." I can only believe what I was told from the horses mouth because these are the men who make the final decisions. The logic behind their endeavors is to come up with draft regulations to regulate the sport to promote positive outcomes, which I helped outline for them.

 

Now, these reporters run with anything that they can get their hands on. I've heard of this Miller chic. I think I've spoken with her a few times. What gets me is the fact that land based shark fishing just doesn't happen that often. It's almost absurd to regulate it, like a moot point. In relation to fishing in general, the general fishing population from the shore, land based shark fishing is but a very small fraction, a very tiny, tiny, tiny fraction, almost a foregone conclusion. Go to ANY beach right now in the ENTIRE state of Florida and find someone shark fishing.....few and far between. In fact, I've taken the FWC SHARK FISHING MYSELF! I showed them how it's done, showed them how the public responds in positive ways, showed them the entire beach, as far as the eye could see, without a single shark fishermen on it but us. When they saw this reality with their own eyes, they now have a realistic sense of what they are actually dealing with instead of a lot of emotionally charged BS, which is why I took them out. 

 

Anyhow, a few dead sharks, here and there, and they all go bat crazy, these reporters. Sure got their priorities right when thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of fish are dead on the west coast becasue of that gutter lake O....why don't these friggin reporters jump on that ban wagon?????????????????? Shaking my head here LoL.

 

And that big Tiger shark that washed up on Juno Beach in May, it was caught by a bunch of guys. How do I know this? Because I was there, just north of where it was caught, fishing with my son. It was a horrid night, windy as all hell, huge waves, I had just (somehow) taken a bait out when I saw all the commotion south of me. Got my binoculars out and watched the whole show. They were trying to get a big 24/0 Catch All circle hook out of that fish's mouth. They worked on it for a long while, and that's what killed it, in my opinion.

 

DB66BAA3-7657-4C3B-BF06-964FA41B0E08.JPG.8fc02f6adbb562ab523a39802f474e59.JPG

 

 

Precisely why I always preach "THE LITTLE THINGS". Because anything in the tackle design that facilitates a rapid release of a landed shark greatly ensures the sharks survival, things like a BARBLESS hook. If they had used a barbless hook that night on that specific shark, that Tiger would still be swimming today because the hook would've been out in a matter of seconds instead of them prying at it for five or more minutes!

 

And this absurdity about sharks dying in general because they are captured and released is pure BS. How do I know this? What data do I have? Because I have captured and tagged HUNDREDS of sharks and not a single fatality has been reported to NOAA, including the tag number on that monster hammerhead captured off Singer Island, which the media is STILL squawking about!! That same damn story was featured on friggin Shark Week by the Discovery Channel last week....you'd think they'd get my consent for airing that...they just won't let that story die. Kinda sick of it, sure am. Anyhow, all tag numbers on all my sharks would identify (me) as the person who tagged them. NOAA would alert me for any fatality or capture reported.

 

Lot of these negative one sided stories stem from Mr. David Shiffman, anyway, some biologist with his paper were he dredged up and spooned out everything into neat little piles of crap. He based most everything on shark forums, hearsay and photographs of guys with their sharks. He said, "look at all these sharks out of the water! They're crushing them!", "look at all these guys posing with their captured sharks!"

 

Well, well, well, what the heck is this, Mr. Shiffman, why it's a picture of YOU with your girlfriend or whatever with a shark completely out of the water with a pole rammed down it's throat while you two SIT on it to get your sweet money shot. Enough said! LoL.

 

 

 

 

I am glad you bring up using barbless hooks. It is amazing how there are still people who refuse to use barbless hooks, specifically barbless circle hooks, when shark fishing. I know a few guys got butt hurt when I claimed not using a barbless circle hook was irresponsible on a different thread, but it is truly imperative that us anglers have to take every step we can in order to preserve our sport especially since media always has fisherman under the microscope when anything goes wrong. If I am willing to take necessary steps towards applying responsible practices as an out of state fisherman when visiting Florida, then I would hope native Floridians would be willing to apply the same standards as well. 

 

The practice these media people really need to focus their attention on though isn't land based shark fishing, it is bowfishing. To many times do you hear of and/or come across wanton waste of sting rays that guys just slaughter and lay out to rot. That practice needs to stop.

 

 

Also, what is your opinion on tandem hook rigs for shark fishing? I have seen guys use them before and it just seems a bit much, especially if you want to facilitate quick releases.

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I don't know that it matters that much, but it looks like that "pole rammed down it's throat" is actually feeding it water, no?

 

On 8/5/2018 at 7:56 PM, zcoker said:

...............

 

Well, well, well, what the heck is this, Mr. Shiffman, why it's a picture of YOU with your girlfriend or whatever with a shark completely out of the water with a pole rammed down it's throat while you two SIT on it to get your sweet money shot. Enough said! LoL.

 

IMG_0272.JPG.ca604ffeb4053616dc3dce3f71e678c7.JPG

 

 

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Posted (edited)

8 hours ago, JoeyZac said:

I don't know that it matters that much, but it looks like that "pole rammed down it's throat" is actually feeding it water, no?

 

 

The watering pole (if that’s what it is) doesn’t give him the right to slander the shark fishing community....in my opinion.

Mr. Shiffman spent a lot of time rummaging through forums for his research paper. He gathered photos of fishermen with their captured sharks and then used them as props to suggest cruelty and indecency toward these animals. He speaks of levels of cruelty: sitting on sharks, laughing and playing around, having them completely out of the water where their internal organs might get crushed…..he articulates a commanding authority veiled with a complete innocence yet, there in that photo I posted, he is doing much the same thing himself….which was my point.

If that isn’t hypocrisy, I don’t know what is.

 

Edited by zcoker

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9 hours ago, Beastly Backlash said:

 

Also, what is your opinion on tandem hook rigs for shark fishing? I have seen guys use them before and it just seems a bit much, especially if you want to facilitate quick releases.

 

I don’t recommend or use tandem hooks when fishing for sharks. Not necessary, in my opinion. Makes a complete and utter mess in the mouth area when you have them up close for release and may also prolong the release process. If for whatever reason the shark has to be cut off, then the shark swims off with all that mess tangled up in their mouth. Not good.

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9 hours ago, Beastly Backlash said:

 

I am glad you bring up using barbless hooks. It is amazing how there are still people who refuse to use barbless hooks, specifically barbless circle hooks, when shark fishing. I know a few guys got butt hurt when I claimed not using a barbless circle hook was irresponsible on a different thread, but it is truly imperative that us anglers have to take every step we can in order to preserve our sport especially since media always has fisherman under the microscope when anything goes wrong. If I am willing to take necessary steps towards applying responsible practices as an out of state fisherman when visiting Florida, then I would hope native Floridians would be willing to apply the same standards as well. 

 

 

 

Going barbless is not on many people’s agenda when fishing for sharks. Lot of fishermen claim that the hook pulls or falls out easier, which is true during the release process (duh).  As long as proper tension is placed on the hook, they never pull or fall out, in my experience. They also claim that the bait won’t stay on the hook if the barb is removed. I’ve never encountered this problem, either, with properly secured bait. It can also be attributed to pure laziness to work on a hook to get it barbless….easier to just grab one and tie it up. Heck, they’re made that way, so why bother LoL.

Regardless, I can attribute ALL my timely releases of sharks to a barbless hook. And so can a lot of other guys. As I’ve always said: the little things DO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. One doesn’t realize just how much time passes during the release process and anything in the tackle design that can expedite the process almost effortlessly, the better chance the sharks have at surviving.

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