Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Shark diving tourism industry defends allegations

Shark diving tourism industry defends allegations

Southland, 7 December 2014 - The shark cage diving tourism industry is fighting back on allegations made against it by the paua diving industry.

In February 2014 the Department of Conservation announced that permits would be required from 1 December to dive with sharks in coastal waters, coinciding with the start of the diving season at Stewart Island. Along with this requirement however, the shark diving tourism industry are once again facing a campaign by PauaMac5 to shut down their eco-businesses.

Allegations of modified shark behaviour through feeding and diver-shaped dummies have resulted in shark dive businesses concerned that these spurious claims have been brought to a select committee. “These claims are unfounded and based on only rumour and hearsay,” says Peter Scott, of Shark Dive NZ. “Our company has worked closely with DOC and other stakeholders to ensure the safety of all concerned, with the sharks being the top of this list”.

Claims that paua divers face an elevated risk of shark attack as a result of cage diving operations are false. “There is no scientific research conducted which indicates that these sharks have been conditioned by cage diving tourism worldwide,” says Mr Scott. “The risk has always been there and always will be. We spend such little time at the Island it would be impossible to condition an apex predator. There are different sharks that come through every day that we have never seen before”.

PauaMac5 has indicated it would like a year-long moratorium issued to allow time for study to be conducted on the impacts of cage diving on the Great Whites.

“The paua industry is fragmented on what they’re trying to achieve here,” says Mr Scott. “First they are worried for their health and safety, then they are worried about recreational users, and now they’re concerned about conservation measures for the sharks. Their mandate seems to change on a whim”.

Cage diving operations at Stewart Island have been operating seasonally since 2007.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Up 0.5% In June Quarter: Services Lead GDP Growth

“Service industries, which represent about two-thirds of the economy, were the main contributor to GDP growth in the quarter, rising 0.7 percent off the back of a subdued result in the March 2019 quarter.” More>>


Non-Giant Fossil Disoveries: Scientists Discover One Of World’s Oldest Bird Species

At 62 million-years-old, the newly-discovered Protodontopteryx ruthae, is one of the oldest named bird species in the world. It lived in New Zealand soon after the dinosaurs died out. More>>

Rural Employers Keen, Migrants Iffy: Employment Visa Changes Announced

“We are committed to ensuring that businesses are able to get the workers they need to fill critical skills shortages, while encouraging employers and regions to work together on long term workforce planning including supporting New Zealanders with the training they need to fill the gaps,” says Iain Lees-Galloway. More>>


Marsden Pipeline Rupture: Report Calls For Supply Improvements, Backs Digger Blame

The report makes several recommendations on how the sector can better prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from an incident. In particular, we consider it essential that government and industry work together to put in place and regularly practise sector-wide response plans, to improve the response to any future incident… More>>


Oil Scare: Trump Authorises Use Of Emergency Crude Stockpile

The New Zealand dollar fell against the US dollar after President Donald Trump authorised the use of the country's emergency crude stockpile after the weekend attack on Saudi Arabia’s major oil facilities. More>>