Albany, Western Australia: Dead tiger shark found floating with a broken jaw prompts urgent warning to fishermen

A dead tiger shark found floating near a marina in a rural town with suspicious injuries has prompted warnings over illegally fishing the animals.

The shark was found in the water near the Princess Royal Sailing Club marina in Albany, along the southern tip of Western Australia, on Saturday morning.

Locals were able bring the 2.5m-long shark to shore where it was left for hours before being disposed of by the City of Albany Council.

Fisheries advisors attended straight away when the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) was first advised of the dead tiger shark at 12.30pm last Saturday, several hours after the shark had been taken out of the water.

While the department determined the shark showed no signs of having died after being illegally caught, it nevertheless warned fisherman against killing sharks.

A 2.5m tiger shark has been found dead with a broken jaw (pictured) in the waters near a coastal town’s marina, prompting authorities to warn fisherman about illegal fishing practices

A DPIRD spokesperson said the shark had been left on the shore for several hours by the time they were able to investigate at about 12:30pm on Saturday.

‘Our examination did not show any obvious sign of a fishing line and hook or an obvious cause of death,’ the spokesperson said.

‘While there is no evidence that a fishing offence has occurred, this is not responsible fishing behaviour.

‘DPIRD encourages fishers to carefully release all unwanted fish immediately to the water unharmed and all retained fish should be dispatched in a considerate manner.’

An image of the shark appears to show marks on its tail fin and a broken jaw.

Former Albany local and expert in marine biodiversity and conservation, Erika Delemarre, said the injuries where consistent with the shark having been fished.

‘Its jaw is clearly broken and there are rope marks on its tail, maybe from where it was strung up to perhaps take photos,’ Ms Delemarre told the Albany Advertiser.

‘Clearly someone has fished it and ditched it back in the water but the shark was dead when they got it out of the water.’ 

The shark was found floating in the water near Albany, WA (pictured), indicating it was a 'recent kill' that had been dumped by a fisherman

The shark was found floating in the water near Albany, WA (pictured), indicating it was a ‘recent kill’ that had been dumped by a fisherman

Ms Delemarre said that the shark being found floating in the water means it was most likely a ‘recent kill’.

A tiger shark about the same size as the one found in Albany was spotted last Tuesday off the coast of Cosy Corner Beach, about 35km west. 

Several other sharks sightings, including a Great White, have been reported to SharkWatch in the the weeks after a whale carcass was spotted near False Island.

A tiger shark is believed to have attacked a woman aged in her 40s while she swam with sea lions at Jurien Bay Beach, north of Perth.

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