View Full Version : Fattal attack on reef

13-12-2004, 06:46 AM
Just read that a man 38yrs young died yesterday at opal reef of cairns . He was spearing at the time and was attacked by a shark wich severed a main artery in his leg.

13-12-2004, 07:07 AM
Geez I hope its not anyone we know. I don't think I know anyone about that age from cairns area who spears. nq you still about?

13-12-2004, 07:10 AM
I think he was from yorkeys had just got back from chrissie island spearing holiday

13-12-2004, 08:01 AM
Read a point raised elsewhere ,was it legal to spearfish in the 9day closure period??????
(maybe not applicable to that area..... :'( :'( sad anyways :'( :'()

13-12-2004, 08:55 AM
....was it legal to spearfish in the 9 day closure period.... If it was for coral reef fin fish then certainly.

Cheers, Kerry.

13-12-2004, 02:43 PM
You can spear during the nne day closures you just cant spear certain fish. We still chase crays, fingermark spanish mackeral during the closures just cry every time a trout swims past. I dont think it is legal to spear in Opal Reef though it has a seasonbal closure to it. As for being attacked by the shark thats all part of the sport. It is quite a rush to swim with sharks however this guy was a bit stupid Itrhink because any smart spearo knows when it is time to get out of the water as sharks disp[lay their attitudes and moods very clearly. But dont worry the idiots who make the rules will soon blame spearfishing and it will soon be outlawed as a dangerous sport.

I love spearing yet do you know that you can fish certain areas but you cant spear them and also that in some areas you can catch a bag limit of 7 trout but can only spear one. Since when did being a spearfishermen not make you a recreational fishermen?


14-12-2004, 04:33 PM
nq you still about?

Nah not me luckily and not bloody likely if I saw the shark before he saw me ;D

15-12-2004, 03:15 AM
however this guy was a bit stupid Itrhink because any smart spearo knows when it is time to get out of the water


Dev i think that this statement is a bit harsh in this circumstance apparently this was a very experienced spearo.
Not that your comment was wrong in spearos with good experience no when a shark is aggitated but like they say the one you dont see

15-12-2004, 03:22 AM
This bloke was more a blue water hunter than a spearo. He and his mates use burley to attract the fish to them, given where these blokes were and the new moon fin fish closer I'd say they were chasing mackerel, wahoo, GT and what ever else that may turn up in there burley trail. This is a very risky element of the sport, sometimes the rewards are great, but this time a very high price was paid.


15-12-2004, 01:24 PM
A mate got buzzed at Tongue a few weeks back spearfishing. He confirmed the sharks are out and about in big numbers at the moment.

15-12-2004, 04:48 PM
My apologies I do think i was a bit harsh just hope this story dosnt give spearing a bad name

Derek Bullock
15-12-2004, 04:57 PM

A MAN killed in a shark attack off the far north Queensland coast was not spearfishing illegally, authorities said today.

Mark Thompson, 38, of Clifton Beach, was with two friends at Opal Reef, about 75km from Cairns, when he was attacked by the shark about 1pm (AEST) on Saturday.

He suffered heavy leg wounds and had a fatal cardiac arrest before paramedics could reach him.

The Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries (DPIF) investigated whether the attack took place in a protected green zone closed to fishing.

DPIF action regional manager Bob Koch said that after talking to police and the owner of the fishing boat, the department had no plans to prosecute.

"The group was blue water spearing north of Opal Reef which is a legal activity," Mr Koch said.

"They were en route to Port Douglas when advised to move into shallower water in Opal Reef for the rescue helicopter operation."

Mr Koch said an independent witness had also confirmed the group was blue water spearing north of Opal Reef.

I think we need to let the family grieve in peace guys.


16-12-2004, 07:15 AM
Makes me think of our own experiences only two weeks ago.

While at Fitzroy we were getting a few coral trout on the spear gun. A lone 5 foot white tip reefer was hanging around - just cruising around the boat and swimming to within 10 metres of us in the water. He was definitely interested but was not showing any agressive behaviour nor was he showing signs of being agitated.

I got a nice trout around 150m from the boat and my mate Brad offered to swim it back (he was holding it through the gills). I set about looking foo more trout when I surface to a hell of a commotion on the boat. The two girls were screaming shark at the top of their lungs. Unbeknowns to Brad, the shark was following him very very closely and when he stopped to look at what the girls we screaming at - the shark starting circling him to about 3 metres effectively cutting him off from the boat.

Of course I yelled my support - telling him not to lose the bloody trout which i had worked so hard for.

He gradually eased his way to the boat with the shark still circling him until the boat got in its way. As he was clmbing the ladder apparantly it came in very very very close which had the girls screaming at the top of their lungs.

Anyway while it never attacked, it made us re-think our spearing activities - it also had me worrying about a 5ish foot shark which I had considered relatively harmless before.

Just goes to show that you can't predict the behaviour of another animal - I now wonder what it would have taken to "flick the switch" on this particular shark to take it from very very inquisitive to agressive.

Condolances to the family of the man in question.