Bunker Bay gets shark monitors

Catherine MasseyBusselton Dunsborough Times
Bunker Bay
Camera IconBunker Bay Credit: Jackson Lavell-Lee,

Bunker Bay last week received two new-generation Shark Monitoring Network receivers and a beach-based warning system, three months after Dunsborough surfer Phil Mummert survived a great white attack at the popular surf break.

The receivers will boost the Shark Monitoring Network, a timely installation following the recent tragedy of Esperance surfer Andrew Sharpe, who was attacked by a shark at the notorious Kelp Beds in Wylie Bay just 15 days ago.

Fisheries Minister Peter Tinley said he was pleased to support the community with more shark-safe equipment following the two attacks.

“The new-generation technology in the new receivers will have lower operational costs; the receivers include a built-in GPS and they can also be monitored from an online dashboard,” he said.

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Member for Vasse and shadow minister for fisheries Libby Mettam welcomed the installation.

“This installation of two receivers at Bunker Bay have been a long time coming considering the WA Liberals have been calling for this since the introduction of the SMART drum line trial in Gracetown over 18 months ago,” she said.

“We have seen a significant increase in white shark activity along our coastline.

“This, together with the fact we have increasing numbers of whales and seals, means this public safety issue is a growing concern.”

Ms Mettam said the Government had not yet provided a commitment to intercepting the increasing number of whale carcasses or an imminent threat policy.

The two receivers were installed at the beach costing more than $63,000, with the City of Busselton set to operate the new $9500 shark warning system tower alerting water users of tagged sharks detected in the area and shark sightings.

Instead of satellite, the new receivers will connect to a digital phone network with a tag detection range of up to 800m, dependent on weather conditions.

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