A man who practiced underwater fishing died after a shark attack Sunday in New Caledonia, the second fatal attack in the archipelago since the beginning of the year.
The man was killed around 11am local time while fishing 500 meters off the coast of an isolated islet in the commune of Poum, in the far north of New Caledonia. According to the local gendarmerie, a member of his family tried to rescue him, without success.
This is the second fatal shark attack in New Caledonia since the beginning of the year.
In February, a 59-year-old Australian tourist was killed in the busy swimming area of Noumea's Château-Royal beach, the same place where three weeks earlier a bather had been very seriously injured by a large shark.
These attacks, exceptional by their seriousness and their location in the heart of the capital of the archipelago, have struck public opinion and led the local authorities to drastic measures: swimming is thus totally prohibited in Noumea, with the exception since early May of an area of 200 meters by 20 meters with a protective net.
See alsoNew Caledonia launches a shark killing campaign
Shark killing campaigns, denounced by many environmental protection associations including the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), now take place every month. A total of 82 animals have been killed since the beginning of February.
The mayor of Poum, where Sunday's attack took place, has ruled out any ban on nautical and fishing activities in her commune.
Without ignoring the increase in the number of attacks on the territory, there is no family in Poum in which fishing does not occupy a preponderant place, "wrote Henriette Tidjine-Hmae in a statement, recalling that the last fatal attack on her commune dates back to March 15, 2000.
However, the mayor invites users of the sea "to respect all the rules of prevention by avoiding any risky human behavior".