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Whale calf dies in Gold Coast shark nets

July 21, 2014

A humpback calf has died in a shark net off Bilinga Beach in the Gold Coast.

The calf was trying to swim under the net when it was caught, Queensland Fisheries Shark Control Manager Jeff Krause has told Gold Coast ABC this morning.

Mr Krause says the whale was already dead when the Marine Animal Release Team arrived.

It’s been 10 years since a humpback died in a control program shark net, the Manager of the shark net program says.

The mother has gone on her way, he says.

Shark Control Program nets and drumlines, situated near 85 beaches to protect swimmers, snared a total of 713 sharks in 2012, according to Queensland government data reported in a Guardian article about a humpback that was released from a Sunshine Coast shark net a year ago.

A freedom of information-obtained analysis from 2009 shows seven dugongs, 36 sea turtles, 90 dolphins and two humpback whales were caught and killed by shark nets in five years between 2004 and 2009.

Anyone who spots a whale or other marine animal tangled in fishing gear or shark netting should call the 24-hour Shark Hotline on 1800 806 891.

See video of the whale here.

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