Celebrity Shark Bait show causes stir


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A new reality television show which involves taunting sharks with minor celebrities is causing a stir with environmentalists.

The TV show, which has been produced by the UK's ITV1 terrestrial television company, involves training minor celebrities to scuba dive and then dunking them in shark infested waters - Albeit in the comparative safety of a shark-resistant cage.

However, the programme has caused controversy among marine environmentalists who say that promoting shark cage diving is going to lead to the mistreatment of the fish and an increase in attacks.

"It is not a good idea for humans to taunt an apex predator by throwing food and blood into the water..."

Craig Bovim, a member the Cape Town Shark Concern Group, told The Australian: "It is not a good idea for humans to taunt an apex predator by throwing food and blood into the water. It is no surprise that human interaction is leading to more attacks."

Celebrity contestants for the programme include TV presenter Ruby Wax, actor Richard E Grant, athlete Colin Jackson and actress Amy Nuttall.

Once they've been taught how to dive, they are going to be suspended in a shark cage and the area is going to be baited with "chum" to bring in sharks, possibly including Great whites, into the area known as "shark alley".

According to The Australian, thousands of divers visit the 100km stretch of the Indian Ocean south of Cape Town, and pay about $230 to get a fish's eye view of a Great white.

It's the process of "chumming" to attract sharks to the area which experts believe might be contributing to a rise in attacks, including fatal attacks.