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Scientists from the Coastal Fisheries Research and Development Centre in Krabi yesterday (February 2) went to take a look at a very large dead shark found floating just off the coast.
But when they got there they found that local residents had already beaten them to it – chopping up the shark and 18 baby sharks found dead inside it, and distributing the meat fairly to everyone, while it was still fresh.
The locals in Tha Maprow village reported that they had found the dead shark floating in Maprao Bay. Local fishermen used a long tail boat to bring it ashore. They said that the shark had no signs of any injuries.
Of some help to the scientists were a bunch of photos someone had thoughtfully taken before the meat cleaver was deployed.
In the interests of science, the villagers also used a yardstick to measure the shark – it was 3.15 metres long – and weighed it – it topped 300 kilos.
The villagers gave their opinion that the shark had died while giving birth.
Tassapon Krajangdara, an official from the Andaman Coastal Fisheries Research and Development Centre in Phuket, commented after seeing photos of the shark that it appeared to be either a bull shark or a cub shark, which belong to the same family as blacktip reef sharks.
They do not harm humans, he said, preying only on small marine creatures such as shrimp, squid and baby turtles.
“Don’t worry,” he said. “This one is not a great white shark. We don’t have great whites here in Thailand.”