Greg Pickering, a professional abalone diver in his mid-50’s was lucky to survive a shark attack while diving
in waters off Poison Creek beach, 160 kilometres east of the town of Esperance, Western Australia, on 8th October.
With five fatal attacks due to Great White Sharks in the past two years and this most recent attack, Western Australia is vying for the unenviable title of “Shark Capital of the World”.
Sadly, as well as spoiling the fun of millions of Australians it also means the Australian ocean sport and tourism industries are suffering significantly from the fear of shark attacks, with many surf and dive shops seeing a 40 per cent decline in revenue.
But the Australian company behind Shark Shield, the world’s only scientifically proven and independently tested electronic shark deterrent, believes the reduced popularity of aquatic sports is unnecessary and a better understanding of electronic shark deterrents would go a long way to reducing concerns about taking to the ocean.
The Shark Shield provides a clear level of protection not only for professional ocean users like abalone divers but recreational users like surfers, spear fishers and scuba divers. Getting that message across, however, has proved problematic.
“It’s incredibly frustrating that a product that is so well proven with 20 years of scientific research, significant independent testing and a long history of saving lives can be so misunderstood,” said Lindsay Lyon, Executive Chairman of Shark Shield.
“When the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) released its independent Shark Shield research in 2012, several media outlets incorrectly reported and sensationalised the results as device failures. “We did not see the media even comment on the tests using towed seal decoys. In this set of tests (186 tows) with the Shark Shield turned off, there were 16 breaches and 27 surface interactions. But with the Shark Shield...
Surfers, kite surfers, swimmers, snorkelers — they’ve all suffered attacks by sharks in Hawaii this year.
Tragically, a 20-year-old German visitor died after being attacked by a shark off Maui earlier this month. Jana Lutteropp was snorkeling at White Rock Beach in Makena, Maui, when the shark attacked, as reported by CNN 22nd Aug 2013
It was the fifth shark attack off the Valley Isle in recent months and in total eight people have been bitten by sharks this year, including four in the past three weeks.
The spate of attacks has left experts puzzled, and groping for answers and local Hawaiian scuba diving and spearfishing businesses struggling. But is there already a proven solution to preventing shark attacks?
Shark Shield, the Australian manufacturer of a patented shark deterrent, believes attacks could have been avoided if its electrical shark deterrent, the Shark Shield FREEDOM7, had been worn.
The company’s electrical shark deterrent is the result of more than 20 years of scientific research by some of the world’s leading experts in sharks including the KwaZulu-Natal Shark Board of South Africa.
The result of these two decades of research and development is the Shark Shield FREEDOM7, the only scientific proven and independently tested electrical shark deterrent designed to reduce the risk of an unwanted shark encounter.
In 2012, scientists from SARDI (South Australian Research Institute) released detailed research where they conducted 116 static bait trials on the Shark Shield FREEDOM7 near the Neptune Islands of South Australia and 189 dynamic trials using seal decoy tows near Seal Island, South Africa.
In the static test, the product significantly increased the time for sharks to take the bait. Once the device was activated, observers noticed a decrease in interactions within two meters. Throughout the seal decoy tow tests, there were no breaches and only two at-surface interactions when the device was...
Shark Shield this week announced the opening of its first U.S. office in St. Petersburg, Florida.
According to the company announcement:
After 12 years of leadership in the Australian spearfishing and dive market, we are now opening our U.S. office to support local U.S. spearfishers and divers and to educate other water sports enthusiasts on alternatives to shark culling and powerheads. Shark Shieldhas been protecting people and providing peace of mind for nearly 20 years, supplied over 20,000 units and have hundreds of user testimonials.
Shark Shield’s technology is based on more than 20 years of scientific research by some of the world’s leading shark experts and is used by the Australian Navy, U.S. Navy & Coast Guard and professional abalone divers and spear fishers around the world. The company recently signed Tom Carroll, two-time World Surfing Champion, as its brand Ambassador in the surfing and stand-up paddle board markets.
The three Shark Shield devices, SURF7, SCUBA7 and FREEDOM7 create an electronic shark barrier by using salt water as the conductor to produce an electromagnetic field that disturbs the sharks’ (ampullary) receptors used to find food. There are no known long-term effects to the shark from the electrical field, but the discomfort is enough to discourage interaction with humans. The field is not detectable by other ocean creatures like the catch you are hunting. As a result, many professional divers and spearfishermen use Shark Shield as their most important piece of equipment.
Shark Shield is currently being sold in dive shops and spearfishing stores. Retail prices range between $599 and $699.
Anyone wanting Shark Shield to visit their dive or spear club to present the company’s technology, as well as the independent testing results including video, should contact Scott Wilson, U.S. sales manager, via email at scott.wilson@SharkShield.com or by phone at +1.727.301.8835.
By Ashley Jeffery, Reporter Last Updated: Sunday, July 27, 2014, 4:44 PM To keep sharks at bay in local waters, an Australian based company is working on a product, named Shark Shield, that cuts down on close encounters.
“[The sharks] might come in but just close enough to where you could see them, then go away and stay on the outer perimeter of us,” said Chad Campbell of Suncoast Dive Shop.
“You wear [Shark Shield] on your ankle and this antenna trails behind you in the water and inside the antenna we’ve got two electrodes,” said Shark Shield GM Amanda Wilson.
The electrodes create an underwater electric field. When a shark comes close to someone wearing the shark shield, the device causes spasms and keeps the sharks away.
“It doesn’t cause any long-term damage, it just causes the muscular contraction of their snout,” said Wilson. “As soon as they’re outside of the field, that spasm stops.”
Shark Shield comes in three variations, with prices starting at $599.
Sunday 7th February saw over 3,500 swimmers take to the water in The Sydney Morning Herald Cole Classic presented by Virgin Active. Little did they know that Shark Shield, the world’s only scientifically proven and independently tested electrical shark deterrent devices were protecting them throughout the race.
Twelve Shark Shield’s were attached one metre below on the large swim buoys that marked out the course, creating a loose electrical shield and providing a place of refuge in the unlikely event that a shark sighting occurred.
Lindsay Lyon, Shark Shield’s Managing Director said, “We were approached by the event organisers who were pro-actively seeking out proven technology to reduce risk for their contestants.”
“Traditionally, our products haven’t been used in organised ocean swims. However, in theory the devices would provide a loose electrical shield to turn sharks away had they ventured into the area, and most certainly a place of refuge for swimmers if required,” Lyon said.
Choice, Australia’s leading independent consumer watchdog, recently announced Shark Shield as the only effective shark deterrent on the market. Following an extensive review of the shark deterrent options currently available, Shark Shield was the only deterrent shown to be independently tested and scientifically proven to turn sharks away.
“The use of Shark Shield’s at this event is a good example of how our proven deterrent technology can be used as a preventative measure to reduce risk to the community. We remain open the opportunity to work with other water sport events and competitions,” added Lyon.
In late 2014 Shark Shield was invited to participate with a panel of international experts by H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco and the Oceanographic Institute to discuss solutions to for human and shark coexistence. The panel met over a two day period with the objective of reconsidering our relationship with sharks through the development of a toolbox through the contributions from the panel of experts.
This “toolbox” is the result of an animated exchange between international experts, and is designed for authorities and actors faced with the coexistence of human activity and potentially dangerous shark species, as well as all those affected by this risk or simply interested in cohabitation issues between humans and wildlife.
Reaching beyond the impasse of the idea of confrontation between man and animals, the toolbox offers a wide range of solutions that are either already in existence or under development to address the risk and provide practical, proven or promising alternatives. It shows that an organised and peaceful cohabitation with sharks is now possible. You can download the toolbox here and view the video here.
H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco stated “This effort to share the oceans with sharks must be at the forefront of a broader commitment to recognise the importance of these large predators and protect them through the strengthened supervision of their fishing
Introducing Ocean Guardian’s FISH01 – Powered by Shark Shield Technology
Raising high quality fish species from the depths can be a demoralizing experience if sharks are in attendance. Thanks to the latest innovation from Ocean Guardian, the new FISH01 has been specifically developed for the fishing industry to improve catch rates by reducing shark tax.
The new device is powered by Shark Shield Technology, the world’s only scientifically proven and independently tested electrical shark deterrent, and has been proven to prevent the majority of shark species from attacking hooked fish, improving efficiency and resulting in less time at sea.
Ocean Guardian CEO, Lindsay Lyon, says, “The major outcome from a trial using Shark Shield Technology conducted by the Western Australian Fishing Industry Council indicated that electrical shark deterrents do deter the majority of shark’s species from attacking hooked fish.”
“For many years we have known that both recreational and commercial fishermen have been using our Shark Shield Technology to significantly improve catch rates, we are now very excited to deliver a product specifically designed to meet their needs, the FISH01”
Key features of the FISH01:
Dramatically reduces collateral damage from sharks Between 10-12 hours of battery life – continuous operation Protective field up to 15 meters deep and 6 meters wide Maximum operating depth of 200m Available for pre-order online, shipping June 2019 How to use the FISH01:
20 meters or less depth: Position half way between the surface and the bottom thereby creating a broad zone from the surface to the bottom. Greater than 20 meters depth: It can be impossible to predict where in the water column sharks are likely to strike your fish. Position close to the sharks, as deep as 200m. “The FISH01 has no effect on the target fish species. Shark Shield Technology has been developed to specifically take advantage of the highly sensitive electrical receptors called...
Ocean Guardian’s Shark Shield Technology proven again as the world’s most effective shark deterrent by French Government Research
Following the success of the West Australian Government’s Shark Deterrent Rebate program and several independent studies proving the effectiveness of Ocean Guardian’s Shark Shield Technology to deter sharks, now the French Government has released new research conducted in Reunion Island. The research affirms Ocean Guardian has the best deterrent technology available on the market worldwide, proving efficacy on white sharks.
Lindsay Lyon, CEO of Ocean Guardian said, “Reunion Island has long been known for its sharky waters and countless attacks over the years leading to a ban on surfing in many locations, and the latest shark attack fatality is tragic. Our technology can reduce the risk of shark fatalities and provide peace of mind so people can continue to enjoy the ocean without fear. Just like seat belts, people need to take all possible safety measures to reduce the their risk, including the use of proven shark deterrent devices for surfing, diving and other activities.”
The research findings from the French Government present Ocean Guardian as the front-runner in technology offerings currently on the market and also suggests that other technology being marketed as “shark deterrents” may not actually work and will not protect humans from shark bites as effectively as Shark Shield Technology.
The French Government tested and researched a range of products, including ESharkForce, No Shark, RPELA and Ocean Guardian’s FREEDOM7, FREEDOM+ Surf and SCUBA7.
Key findings from the latest research conducted by the French Government:
Ocean Guardan’s Shark Shield Technology demonstrates efficacy on the white shark*. No safety product can be effective at 100% (seat belts, airbags, life jackets) however with the Ocean Guardian FREEDOM+ Surf the Ocean Guardian devices clearly produce the strongest electrical field. At 1M from the centre of the electrodes,...
The Western Australian Governments Fisheries Minster Dave Kelly has today announced an additional 500 subsidies for proven shark deterrent devices for local residents, just in time for the autumn surfing season which is known to have an increased white shark activity in the south west region. To date more than 3,400 divers and surfers have taken up the world first $200 rebate. The Ocean Guardian FREEDOM7 and FREEDOM+ Surf are the only scientifically proven shark deterrents approved for the governments rebate program.
Dave Kelly states, “It’s great news that more than 3,400 Western Australians have so far put their personal safety first and purchased a university-tested and proven device through the subsidy program.”
Lindsay Lyon, CEO of Ocean Guardian, says, “Ocean Guardian devices are powered by Shark Shield Technology, the world’s only scientifically proven and independently tested electrical shark deterrent. The rebate program has been an incredible success in WA, both for the individual and the environment, which begs the question why other state governments have not implemented the same successful program. Governments have recommended and mandated many safety products such as seat belts and bike helmets, and there is no doubt that this innovative shark deterrent rebate program is saving lives.
“For as little as $299 surfers can significantly improve their own safety. It’s a small price to pay for a device that has the potential to save your life,” adds Kelly.
The additional 500 rebates for Ocean Guardian’s scientifically proven personal shark deterrent devices takes the total made available to Western Australian surfers and divers to 4,000 devices. More than 3,400 of these devices have been purchased, with more than 470 of those bought by surfers.
The subsidy program launched in May 2017 delivers on a McGowan Government’s election promise to provide a world-first subsidy for WA water users as a part of...
Patent pending and powered by Shark Shield Technology the Ocean Guardian eSPEAR is the world’s first handheld electrical shark deterrent designed for diving, snorkelling and spearfishing. Shark Shield Technology is the world’s only scientifically proven and independently test electrical shark deterrent technology. Ocean Guardian’s eSPEAR expands personal protection beyond surfers and divers by providing an affordable, handheld device for the everyday ocean user.
Backed by 20 years of research, the small, lightweight and easy to carry device offers powerful and proven shark deterrent protection. Featuring a trigger activated extendable baton, the user is able to create a powerful electrical field of up to 1m in diameter and 2.5m length to deter an unwanted shark encounter.
Ocean Guardian CEO, Lindsay Lyon says, “Our customers have been asking for a smaller device, so we’re excited to bring this product to market enabling people to help mitigate their fear of sharks and enjoy the ocean, and help save our marine life. It’s very simple to use – simply attach it to your dive belt, swimsuit or trunks and you can swim in the ocean with the comfort of knowing you have the power of Shark Shield Technology at your fingertips.”
The eSPEAR will be launched today via an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to help raise funds to not only expedite the product development of the eSPEAR, but also to raise funds to deliver Ocean Guardian’s great vision of removing shark nets and drumlines through new technology. Those who register now via Indiegogo will receive a 45% discount off the eSPEAR.
“We are seeking to raise capital in order to partner with one of Australia’s leading universities to develop our game-changing long-range shark deterrent technology. We have proven personal technology and believe that the new beach barrier technology has the capability to replace inhumane shark nets around the world...
Shark Shield, the world’s only scientifically proven and independently tested electrical shark deterrent allows kayak anglers to dodge shark tax.
Big game ocean kayak fishermen are being heavily “taxed” every day losing whole fish or a chunk of their fish to the oceans ultimate tax man, the shark.
Nobody knows shark tax better than The Kayak Fishing Show host Jim Sammons who has now partnered with Shark Shield to stop the shark tax. Jim’s had many close calls with shark tax like the shark that tore a fish from his hands during filming for the shows in New Zealand.
“I don’t have a particular fear of sharks, but I have certainly had my share of close encounters” says Sammons, “Shark Shield will help ensure my catch remains my catch, and it will certainly give me more peace of mind while my feet are dangling in the water.”
As more and more ‘yak fishers take to the oceans, shark tax is becoming an ever increasing burden. Back in April, Hawaiian local Isaac Brumaghim had a close call with the tax man when a tiger shark jumped out of the water stealing his catch. Isaac’s video of his close encounter with the men in grey suits has had over ten million views.
“We’ve noticed a change in shark behaviour over the last few years, in that sharks are learning to approach anglers after they hook a fish, and then steal those fish for an easy feed. This is what we refer to as a shark tax”, says Amanda Wilson, Managing Director at Shark Shield.
“Our unique technology is a perfect fit for ocean kayak fishing, allowing ‘yak fishers to explore the ocean with peace of mind from unwanted shark encounters and avoid that pesky shark tax.”