Florida has been the location of two YouTube videos of students catching hammerhead sharks. Viktor Hluben of Florida Atlantic University posted a video of his live catch and release of one just last week.
“It was extremely exciting, an adrenaline rush. It’s two apex predators going at it,” he told the Sun Sentinel, describing how they hauled it 50 yards of the beach, “We saw a giant dorsal fin. Then it made another run out.”
After dragging it close enough, they attached a rope to the shark’s tail, shot the video, and cut it loose: “The only thing running through my mind is as soon as the shark lands on the beach we’ve got to be diligent and get it back into the water fast. We are all about releasing them.”
Just a few days ago, another Florida Atlantic University student was towed in his kayak by a hammerhead shark for two hours and twelve miles after hooking it with fishing line. Adam Fisk, the 22 year old student, posted a video of his adventure to his YouTube account:
“Adam has reported in with a good one this time!” Fisk’s company’s website, Team Rebel Fishing posted, “Adam Fisk has set the bar pretty high once again, after being towed for 2 hours and 12 miles by an estimated 10-11ft hammerhead in his KAYAK. That’s right, in the kayak! Kudos to Fisk on his accomplishment.” The company also posted an instragram photo of the event:
Others, like NOAA Fisheries’ research biologist John Carlson, were less enthusiastic. “I’m sure he had the best intentions in mind … but I would predict the animal was stressed out,” he told the Palm Beach Post, “For what? Two hours. That’s quite a long time, especially for a species like a hammerhead that has to swim to breathe.” He added that animals that struggle with fishing line for over 85 minutes are at risk of death from stress hormone overdose and lack of oxygen.
Image via Adam Fisk, YouTube