Gill Fishing: More than 70 sharks found dead on beach, Coast Guard saves 50 more in offshore bust


Port Isabel-South Padre Press

Dozens of sharks were found dead in a mile-long gill net that washed ashore near Island Adventure Park on the north end of South Padre Island Monday. The U.S Coast Guard also interrupted the activities of gill net fishermen in two separate events this week, rescuing as many as 50 more sharks.

In a find that had social media abuzz Monday, local surfer Tommy J. Saenz posted several photos on Facebook of the washed up netting, which contained the carcasses of approximately 70 sharks along with several stingrays. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is investigating the incident.

Gill net fishing appears to increase during the winter months when currents shift, said Lt. Hans de Groot, public affairs officer for the U.S. Coast Guard – Sector Corpus Christi Thursday. “A lot of the stuff is drifting north,” he said.

Those nets come north from Mexican fishermen, some of whom attempt to illegally fish American waters. Indeed, the Coast Guard intercepted two such operations just this week.

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1 comment

    • Old Hank on December 9, 2015 at 9:15 am
    • Reply

    Personally I don’t like sharks, and I don’t mind much seeing them be killed. They are dangerous for swimmers. I do however realize they are an important part of the overall ecosystem of the Gulf, so I have mixed feelings about this story. As for the aggressive Mexican fishermen, the Mexicans have to eat too. I do believe however they have overfished the Mexican waters, so that’s another ecological problem that can’t go unnoticed. They should be dealing with their problem on that side of the border, and stay out of our water. Our Coast Guard is probably justified in doing whatever it takes to prevent overfishing. If Donald Trump gets elected, I hope that he not only gets the Mexicans to pay for the wall, but also for the coast guard to keep Mexican fishermen out of US waters. (Sorry Donald, fat chance in something like that ever happening!)

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