Beqa Lagoon Fiji
Although hanging a print of a shark on the wall is not everyone’s cup of tea, I really enjoy diving with sharks and from a conservation perspective, they are in a lot of trouble.
With approximately 70 million sharks killed every year, predominantly for their fins, it’s no wonder that the IUCN has assessed that one-third of all open ocean shark species are threatened with extinction. Sharks are considered ‘keystone species’, which means that as apex predators, they are very important in maintaining the balance in our marine ecosystems.
Removing too many sharks from an eco-system can lead to a massive shift in the balance throughout the food chain. With all the destruction of shark species going on around the globe it’s good to dive with operators like Aquatrek in Fiji where marine reserves have been formed to protect sharks and other marine life through agreements made with local dive operators, the Fijian government and the local Fijian villagers.
It is an exhilarating feeling to be in the water with so many of these top predators and it has given me an appreciation and an understanding of these magnificent creatures. The images featured here of bull and lemon sharks were captured at a dive site called ‘The Bistro’ in Beqa Lagoon where I had up to 30 big sharks swimming in and out of view during the dive. Many of the sharks are carrying fishing hooks and wire traces around with them where they have been caught on baited long lines and been lucky enough to escape.