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The Solution to Keeping Sharks From Dying in Fishing Nets? Magnets

A simple trick could have a monumental impact.

Surfers, swimmers and scuba divers get a lot of tips on how to protect themselves from a shark attack.

But a more important problem might be figuring out how to save sharks from us.


Our pollution is killing them daily, and they often become tangled in the fishing nets from commercial boats, which can cause serious injury, trauma and even death.

But researchers from Australia's University of Newcastle think they might have an incredibly cheap and simple solution to that problem: magnets.


The results of their new study show that simple magnets attached to fish traps can create something of a magnetic field barrier that repels sharks.

That's because sharks use special sensing pores found around their noses and heads in order to locate nearby prey.

Those pores are extra sensitive to those magnetic fields, so they tend to stay away.

Fish don't have those same sensitive pores, so the researchers found that fishermen didn't have to worry at all that it would repel their catch, too. They would also save time and resources by not having to untangle sharks from their nets.

Plus, at just $2 per magnet, the cost to create a shark repellent trap could come in at less than $30, making it a super affordable solution to a big problem.

It's not only sharks who get caught up in nets. Animals like whales, porpoises, dolphins and sea turtles have also fallen victim to such a fate. The World Wildlife Fund estimates that as many as 300,000 animals are bycatch every year.

While the magnet solution can't save all of them, it could be a great way to start thinking about the small, simple and affordable steps everyone around the world can take to start protecting our ocean animals from the threat of humans.

Add your name right now to ban the trade of shark fins in the U.S. and protect our oceans with Oceana.

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