Calls for shark cull in Western Australia

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Tourism operators in Western Australia are calling for a shark cull, following the fourth fatal shark attack in seven months.

Peter Kurmann was killed on Saturday while diving for crayfish off a mile off Stratham Beach, which is 145 miles south of Perth. He was mauled by what the state's Department of Fisheries has confirmed was a Great white shark – the same species is also thought to be responsible for the other three deaths.

This latest attack has made the waters of Western Australia the most dangerous place in the world for shark attacks, leading to tourists and locals being afraid to swim in the water.

A large stretch of beach was closed again yesterday after a shark was spotted in the water offshore of Busselton, just a few miles from Saturday's attack and organisers of a national school triathlon in Busselton have re-located the ocean swim to a local pool.

There's usually an average of one fatal shark attack a year in Australia and this spate of attacks off the coast of Western Australia is unprecedented.

Some states in Australia use shark nets, but authorities in Western Australia say that such nets can actually attract sharks because fish and fauna become trapped in them.

A spokesman for the state's Shark Response Unit said authorities would kill any sharks regarded as a danger to the public, but ruled out a cull.

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