SMS Annual Competitive Grants for 16/17

There were five successful grant applications for the first round of the Annual Competitive Grant program. The successful projects are listed below and majority have been completed.

  1. The behavioural response of white sharks to commercially-available personal shark deterrents (PDF, 1624.03 KB) - Flinders University
    This study provided a detailed assessment of the efficiency and effect of several commercially available shark repellents by field testing them on White Sharks in South Australia. The sharks’ behavioural responses were  documented to determine the extent to which the deterrent might deter a shark from biting someone wearing one of these devices.
    Publication arising from research:
    Huveneers C, Whitmarsh S, Thiele M, Meyer L, Fox A, Bradshaw CJA. (2018) Effectiveness of five personal shark-bite deterrents for surfers. PeerJ 6:e5554
  2. Using “shark-cam” to unravel shark behaviour – The University of Sydney
    This study attempted to test a specialised “shark-cam” to better understand the behaviour of potentially dangerous sharks when they are in near-shore regions. It involved trying to attach a specialised small cameras to tagged sharks to help develop understanding of what sharks do in shallow inshore waters where they might interact with humans.
  3. Developing a rapid method to assess personal electrical and magnet-based shark deterrent devices - Macquarie University
    This project will develop a quick and cost effective way to assess the effectiveness of personal electronic and magnetic shark deterrents so people can identify those devices likely to deter sharks and those which won’t, based on fundamental physical principles and basic shark neurobiology. It will complement the Flinders University project being done in South Australia.
  4. Shark deterrents and detection: Community perceptions, sentiment and preferences for shark management strategies (PDF, 1352.42 KB) - Charles Sturt University
    This study investigated community perceptions of approaches to shark management, including acceptability of a range of lethal and non-lethal strategies. The project gathered people's perceptions to assist with shark management policy development and communication.
    Publications arising from research:
    Simmons, P & Mehmet, M (2018). Shark management strategy policy considerations: Community preferences, reasoning and speculations. Marine Policy, 96, 111-119
    Simmons, P & Mehmet, M (2018) Feeding frenzy: public accuse the media of deliberately fuelling shark fear. The Conversation
  5. Impacts on human behaviour following a shark-related trauma (PDF, 101.91 KB) - Beyond The Bite Inc. and The University of Sydney
    This study assessed the psychological impact of a shark attack. Beyond the Bite is a support group of over 250 members including survivors, first responders, witnesses, friends and families of survivors and fatal victims. Understanding the psychological impact of those directly affected by a shark attack will assist in the development of better targeted support services for these people. 
    Publication arising from research:
    Taylor, J., McLean, L., Korner, A., & Glozier, N. (2018). Direct and indirect psychological impacts of shark-bite events. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry.