A whale shark has been rescued from fishing net in Peru.
Video taken in the coastal area of Tumbes, Peru August 26 shows the moment a group of fisherman attempt to untangle a beached shark.
The fishermen were able to cut through heavy net and push the shark back into the water.
It is unknown whether the net was actively being used or if it had simply been discarded.
Discarded nets are often referred to as ghost nets because they often float freely around in the ocean.
Unfortunately, they also pose a huge hazard to the world’s marine life as fish and other sea creatures can become tangled in them.
Earlier this month a gray seal was found to have become entangled in a net off the coast of Chatham, Maryland. The net was wrapped around the seal’s neck and was cutting into the flesh.
Officials from the International Fund for Animal Welfare were able to sedate the seal and safely remove the net.
Coincidently, a 1,500-pound mass of derelict fishing net was retrieved from waters off Ocean City, Maryland. TowBoatUS removed the net in conjunction with project leaders BoatUS Foundation.
Funds for the project came from a $51,000 grant from the NOAA Marine Debris Program. According to a press release, “NOAA has supported more than 100 marine debris-removal projects across the country eliminating more than 5,500 metric tons of debris.”
The net was removed one day before 12 rehabilitated sea turtles were release by the National Aquarium Animal Rescue team
While ghost nets are a huge issue, plastic and other debris also can cause significant damage to marine and bird life. We can all help the environment by reducing plastic use and using the opportunity to recycle whenever possible.