Experts speculate cause of Red Sea shark attacks

by Shannon Lee
Scientists are trying to determine what caused the shark attacks on tourists in the normally calm waters of Egypt's Red Sea.
A German woman died and four other were injured last week during a series of shark attacks near the shore of a resort in Sharm el-Sheikh.
Marine biologist George Burgess told the BBC the attacks were very unusual and definitely caused by environmental factors.
"What you have here are rational attempts by a predator to find food," Burgess said.
International investigators identified at least two different species of sharks as the predators in different attacks, but the investigation into what caused the incidents is still ongoing.
Other experts said overfishing, irresponsible tourist behavior and unusually high temperatures in the area may have encouraged sharks to move into shallower waters, reported the Guardian.
Hossam El-Hamalawy, a certified Red Sea rescue diver, told the Guardian that the tourism industry has been damaging the Red Sea ecology for years and he is "surprised the government has just woken up and discovered this overnight."
Many beaches have been closed to swimmers following the fatal attack Dec. 5, and the Egyptian government is concerned about the financial impact the shark attacks will have on tourism.

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This page contains a single entry by Shannon published on December 9, 2010 4:20 PM.

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