Instagram | @dmartinmayes

Fisherman Finds Hundreds Of Dead Sharks Trapped In Floating ‘Ghost Net’

You've probably heard this before, but it's an important point to reiterate: We do more harm to sharks than they do to us. On average, there are about 16 shark attacks in the US per year resulting in 1-2 deaths every two years. In contrast, over 700 sharks will be killed in fishing nets this year.

To sum things up, we're causing significantly more harm than they are.

Finding sharks and other sea creatures caught in old fishing nets is not an uncommon sight.

Unsplash | Jakob Owens

However, it is certainly an unpleasant one.

Ghost nets are thin, natural-colored nets held up by floats in order to keep them in place.

It's unknown exactly how many ghost nets plague the waters today.

Reddit | OGWhiz

As CBC reported, however, a conservation group called Emerald Sea Protection Society has determined that about 800,000 tons of the gear finds its way into oceans each year.

One fisherman and diving instructor is speaking out against these kinds of nets after witnessing the aftermath of one in the Cayman Islands.

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Dominick Martin-Mayes was fishing with a few fellow diver friends when they came across a mass that he originally thought was a large log.

However, it soon became clear what he was really looking at.

Reddit | merluccius

"As we got closer we could see it was a net with floats," he explained to The Independant. "I jumped in the water first and was shocked at what I saw. It took my breath away."

"The first thing I saw was the juvenile oceanic whitetip [shark]."

Instagram | @dmartinmayes

Martin-Mayes explained that he had stumbled upon "a solid net of dead, decomposing fish and sharks."

Upon making this discovery, Martin-Mayes tried his best to do something about it.

Reddit | khumbaya23

"I got my buddy who was with me to grab a knife and jump in. We did what we could to free some of the trapped life but most of it was already dead."

As much as they wanted to help, there was only so much they could do.

Instagram | @dmartinmayes

"You get your hand wrapped in it and you drown," Martin-Mayes said. "The net's sole purpose in life is to kill."

And so, his only real remaining option was to document what he found.

Instagram | @dmartinmayes

He shared photographs of the horrific scene on his Instagram along with a message of disheartenment:

"So sad jumping in and seeing 10/15/20 god knows how many dead sharks, Triple tails, and Ocean Yellowtails."

"So sad with humanity right now. I’m numb."

Instagram | @dmartinmayes

Yahoo reports that the net was subsequently towed to shore and taken away by a non-profit group in the area.

h/t: The Independent, Yahoo