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Old 22-06-2015, 17:24   #1
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Mack the Knife?

I want it to be perfectly clear. I have been a hunter and fisherman my entire life. I practice fair sportsmanship. I eat what I kill. However, a news item recently surfaced that detailed the story of a Florida sport charter fisherman who harvested a Hammerhead Shark in "international waters." The fish was missing its fin, its jaws were removed, it had been either shot repeatedly or speared and 34 Hammerhead pups were cut from its stomach while on display at his home dock. The Hammerhead is considered an "endangered species." The news report and photos can be seen here: Florida fisherman removes 34 baby sharks from the body of dead hammerhead mother | Daily Mail Online... Did the charter captain exhibit good sportsmanship? What was his purpose? What does it say about the onlookers/tourists?
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Old 24-06-2015, 01:22   #2
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Re: Mack the Knife?

Captain Robson of the Phoenix, on his website, says he works to protect fish stocks so there will be fish for generations to come.
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Old 24-06-2015, 06:19   #3
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Re: Mack the Knife?

"a 13-foot hammerhead that was caught in the nets of a charter boat on a recent fishing expedition"

Are there really fishing charters that use trawling nets? That doesn't seem like much fun to me.

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Old 24-06-2015, 08:02   #4
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Re: Mack the Knife?

I too am a lifelong hunter.

There is no sportsmanship in what was done.

Disgusting.

(after a few beers I'll tell you how I REALLY feel!)
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Old 24-06-2015, 08:18   #5
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Re: Mack the Knife?

If it is pulled in dead as accidental by-catch in a legal trawl net, then sportsmanship is neither here nor there in the matter. Cutting the jaws and fins and pups out of a dead carcass may be gross, but it isn't reprehensible.

If it was targeted alive, then that may be a different story.

The article posted leaves a lot of holes in the story - I still don't understand a sportfishing charter dragging trawl nets.

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Old 24-06-2015, 09:01   #6
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Re: Mack the Knife?

Facts? It's the Daily Mail

It's more renowned for its unique perspective on international relations.
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Old 24-06-2015, 09:51   #7
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Re: Mack the Knife?

Ditto Colemj. There is no reason to target sharks!
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Old 24-06-2015, 12:21   #8
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Re: Mack the Knife?

Yes, the story is very poorly written.
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Old 24-06-2015, 18:08   #9
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Re: Mack the Knife?

What bothered me the most about the captain's act is the questionable circumstances surrounding the "catch" and the Barnum and Bailey exhibition of removing the pups while the sheeple watched. What was the purpose? The fact that the shark's jaws were removed and its fin harvested seemed incidental to me based upon his finale. The act of the captain trivialized nature in an obscene way although I'm sure he felt proud of his performance as he left the dock. As mentioned by someone regarding the quality of journalism, the eloquence of the article in stylistic terms does not diminish the information provided and in no way marginalizes the captain's pathetic act. It is always interesting to see how differently people view things and where their focus centers. There are several other articles available online with perhaps better writing. However, this site had the most graphic photos/video. Thanks for the replies.
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Old 24-06-2015, 19:10   #10
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Re: Mack the Knife?

Not sure how it trivializes nature anymore than hanging a marlin or deer or similar in public and taking pictures. Or "scientific" dissections of sharks and whales done on beaches in front of "sheeple". Crass? Maybe. Trivialization? Not really - although this gets into personal opinion/feeling about this type of thing.

The article wasn't being faulted for stylistic reasons - it was being faulted for gaps and facts. I'm still confused why a sport fish charter was dragging trawl nets. Either this is a new type of fishing charter (and a rather boring one, I would think), or it was not a fishing charter, or it was not dragging nets.

That is the type of problem with the journalism.

On the other hand, I quite like their "unique perspective on international relations" reporting.

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Old 25-06-2015, 13:58   #11
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Re: Mack the Knife?

Here's another link to the story:www.al.com/.../pregnant_hammerhead_shark_land....
I don't think this can be construed as sensationalized.
Mark,
The act of butchering an "endangered species" shark and removing its pups for the entertainment of the crowd can only be construed as trivializing nature since it was not being cleaned for consumption but rather as a form of entertainment to a crowd that accepted his behaviour. Again, what was the purpose of his act? Why the audible counting of the pups as he pulled them, one by one, from the carcass? What happened to the carcass and the pups after his performance was finished? We can assume what happened to its jaws and fins. Perhaps we will never know. However, I have tried to see the connection/comparison to taxidermy but it doesn't work for me. A taxidermist's job is to present the closest natural representation of a game animal with respect for the beauty, power and grace of the specie. It is not prepared in a public display but in the workshop of the artist. To compare the captain's butchery on the dock to a taxidermist's art is, surely, a non sequitur for me.
Secondly, the "faults and gaps" could be a result of poor journalism but they didn't, for me, interfere with the tenor of information being presented. We cannot diminish the main thrust of the story as further reports noted there were some people who witnessed the event and were not happy with the captain's actions.
The point I want to make is that there is a proper etiquette for most things in life. As a young boy, I was taught respect and conservation for the natural world. We followed bag limits; never hunted/fished out of season; abided by slot limits; learned to clean fish and butcher meat properly and disposed of the remains responsibly. And, never turned a hunt or a cleaning station into a carnival spectacle. We are part of the natural world--not separate and distinct. We see hundreds of species disappearing daily and for some this is not a problem. But there are some of us who desire the continuance of the beauty of the natural world and for this we need a conservation ethic. The actions of the charter captain caught on film were repugnant, mindless and crude. They were not the actions of a true sportsman. I can find no valid excuse for his behaviour.
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Old 25-06-2015, 14:59   #12
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Re: Mack the Knife?

You seem to think I am defending this - I am not.

However, I don't have the same sensitivity or hysterics about it as you.

There are rich people paying bazillions to legally shoot almost extinct animals (of which the hammerhead shark is not - not even close). I mean, animals whose entire population can almost be counted on your fingers and toes. That is more to my offensive sensitivities regarding hunting.

BTW, was out fishing today and bringing a bloody tuna aboard raised a large hammerhead that swam around us.

Should have been trawling nets instead of lines…

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Old 26-06-2015, 00:09   #13
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Re: Mack the Knife?

The Destin Log told the June 12 story from the anglers' perspective. The boat had been out deep sea fishing for red snapper on the bottom and was returning to home port when the crew spotted the shark feeding on a turtle on the surface and put bait out using a fishing rod and reel with relatively light, 100- or 80-lb. test, line. Crew and passengers took turns fighting the shark for more than three hours. The shark dove deep in the water and died at the end of its fight.

No nets were involved. The Phoenix normally does bottom fishing for red snapper, and trolling or perhaps sometimes casting for species such as king mackeral, cobia, and amberjack, sometimes working offshore tide/current lines where larger fish find prey. These fisheries use rods and reels.
(Sometimes red snapper/bottom fishing has been known to use motorized reels, not to fight the fish, but simply to cope with retrieving tackle and fish from very deep water... I don't know if this gear would be used on the Phoenix.)

Shark filets were also saved after the Phoenix returned, for a local feast being planned. Shark fishing had not been planned; it was just that the shark was in the wrong place at the wrong time from the shark's perspective, and presented a once in a lifetime opportunity from the anglers' perspective.
I don't think the crew had malice or disrespect toward the fish or meant to put on a spectacle in butchering it, but just didn't have better facilities than dockside as this was a much larger fish than is ever routinely caught on the boat. Fish cleaning stations in local marinas, if provided, are not designed for 13-foot-long fish. That's probably true even in Texas, where possibly even the fish stories are bigger... But this was in Florida. Possibly the crew of the Phoenix have no notion that they caught a bit of controversy along with a big fish.


m.thedestinlog.com/outdoors/shark-of-a-lifetime-phoenix-hammers-down-on-shark-1.490651.
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Old 26-06-2015, 08:24   #14
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Re: Mack the Knife?

‘Shark of a lifetime’ Phoenix hammers down on shark - Outdoors - The Destin Log
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Old 27-06-2015, 08:57   #15
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Re: Mack the Knife?


Thanks for the update, Gord. This certainly changes the complexion of the story.
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