KEY WEST, Florida -- SharkDefense Technologies and HEFA Rare Earth Canada, Co. Ltd. announced today that shark-repellent metal alloys are available for sale. The metal alloys are proven to reduce the accidental capture of sharks and are anticipated to benefit many commercial fishing operations.
The shark-repellent metal alloys work by generating a small voltage in seawater, which affects a shark's electric sense. Bony fish, such as tuna, do not have the organ responsible for the electric sense and are unaffected by the metals. While conducting experiments with magnets in 2006, SharkDefense discovered the shark-repelling effects of the metal alloys. The alloys induced repellent responses on sharks which were similar to those effects induced by the magnets.
Craig O'Connell, a partner with SharkDefense who has participated in the repellent trials pointed out that "through extensive testing on a variety of species of sharks, it is evident that these metals induce repellent responses which will allow fisherman to focus their effort on target species."
Application of the metal alloy repellent simply requires a small piece of metal to be secured near the bait at each hook. Continuously submerged in salt water, the metals last for up to 48 hours.
Dr. Patrick Rice, Director of Marine Science at Florida Keys Community College, carefully monitors the development of shark repellent technologies and advises that a number of recent "repellent tests performed by marine fisheries scientists and independent scientists confirm that these metals are able to reduce shark bycatch."
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