Saturday, June 20, 2009

Six Gill Sharks - Sportfish or Tourism?

A few years ago I was in Honduras with our company looking for whale sharks. While the island of Utila turned out to be hit and miss for commercial shark diving I did get a chance to befriend Karl Stanley and his unique shark diving operation on Roatan.

Actually, to be fair, when I first met Karl he had no idea the sharks he was encountering at 2000' were to become one of the top shark destinations on the planet.

Karl and his submarine "Idabel" had stumbled upon a veritable treasure trove of simply titanic Six Gill sharks off the coast of Roatan. Soon divers, filmmakers, and television productions were seeking Karl out - for good reason.

Which makes this weeks news from Ireland unfortunate. The image you are looking at is a one time catch of a half ton Six Gill which of no commercial value which cannot be eaten.

Our sister company Shark Divers which offers commercial shark diving consulting services has this to say about one time takes vs sustainable tourism:

"A dead shark is worth a few dollars to a local economy. A live shark, many thousands of dollars and is a completely renewable resource. In the Maldives, divers spend US$2.3 million a year on shark dives - estimated at 100 times more than the export value of the shark meat".

Those are easy numbers to understand and get behind for anyone interested in business opportunities that go beyond "one time takes". For guys like Karl Stanley in Honduras it's an elemental equation:



Patric Douglas CEO
www.sharkdiver.com
www.sharkdivers.com
www.sharkdivers.blogspot.com
www.guadalupefund.org
www.islandofthegreatwhiteshark.com
415.235.9410

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