We all know that shark populations are declining in many of the world’s oceans. Some of this decline is due to finning, the practice of removing the fins from sharks to supply the shark fin soup market.
But, did you know that often times sharks are caught when trying to fish for something else? This is called bycatch, and countless sharks every year are killed and simply thrown back because they aren’t wanted… To avoid catching these unwanted sharks in the first place, chemist Eric Stroud, working on Bimini Islands in the Bahamas has been developing shark repellent materials. One of these involves producing a magnetic field around fishing hooks that could deter sharks from going after the bait.
These magnets can also be used to keep sharks away from swimming and surfing beaches. Other potential repellents include chemicals, and rare earth metals that seem to be unpleasant to the shark. All of these repellents operate on the principle of producing a negative stimulus if the shark gets too close.
See the full story, as well as a cool video at: