Shark control equipment is being removed from some Queensland beaches due to forecast rough weather.
Fisheries Queensland Shark Control Program Manager Michael Mikitis said removing the equipment was normal practice when rough weather was predicted.
“With the possibility of a cyclone forming in North Queensland and likely to affect a wide stretch of Queensland’s coastline, we have started removing drumlines before the weather worsens,” Mr Mikitis said.
“Drumline hooks and buoys have been removed from Mackay, the Capricorn Coast and Tannum Sands.
“Shark control nets were removed from all Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast beaches, and Rainbow Beach over the weekend however the drumlines in those areas remain in place at this stage.
“We will keep a close eye on the weather and teams are prepared to respond accordingly if necessary.”
Mr Mikitis said temporarily removing the equipment was also a public safety issue.
“High seas can cause some equipment to come adrift and loose shark control equipment can be a danger to swimmers and boats,” Mr Mikitis said.
“Anyone who sees any unsecured shark control equipment including ropes, netting or buoys should call the Shark Control Program Hotline on 1800 806 891.
“Swimmers are also advised to follow safe swimming practices, including swimming between the flags and not swimming at dusk or dawn, particularly with the shark control equipment out of action temporarily.
“In rough conditions, it’s important that people take advice from the Queensland Surf Lifesaving Service as to whether they should go into the water.”
Be Safe. Be SharkSmart
· Don’t swim at dawn or dusk
· Always swim in clear water (not in murky water, anchorages, estuary mouths or canals)
· Don’t throw food scraps or fish waste overboard
· Don’t swim where fish are being cleaned
· Swim, surf, snorkel or dive with a buddy
· Follow local signage and swim between the flags at patrolled beaches.
Follow Fisheries Queensland on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@FisheriesQld).