Who brings a machete to an ocean swim ?

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Interesting detail here, as mentioned by Gold Medal Mel and The Swim Brief

One of the members of her support team traveling in a small inflatable, a local fisherman named Charles Ebanks, distracted the sharks with dead fish, then killed three of six- to eight-footers with a machete.

Earlier this week we read that Mr. and Mrs. Palfrey didn’t plan for this, and didn’t know about it before afterwards.

“It was not in any of our plans for that to happen. I was not aware it was going to happen until after the event. Our goal was to do a swim. It was not to do anything to the environment”

But still, who brings a machete to an ocean swim ? Did they know that the Oceanic white tip sharks are listed as ‘vulnerable’ globally on the IUCN Red List of Threathened Species ? And is it true that the three sharks were ‘chopped to death’, as stated here ?

Now, I’m from a nation that kills pilot whales, and therefore should probably keep quiet about killing creatures of the ocean. But we do it for food, in an as quick way as possible, with a strict ban on chopping. Keeping track of their numbers, in order to make sure that they are not endangered. Never for fun, though someone probably enjoys the thrill.

Ocean swims are supposed to be fun. I’ve done a couple myself, here in the Atlantic ocean, with the contingency plan in case of whales and sharks and giant squids coming up on me being ‘get the f*** out of the water’. I don’t bring a machete. And I by the way don’t kill whales myself, either (oh what a wimp).

Yes, it can be frustrating having to quit or be slowed down, because of hitting a strong current or whatever. But that is part of the sport, the challenge, the risk that does it so much greater to sometimes win. In contrast, there is not much ‘unassisted swim’ about having people clearing your path across the ocean with machetes.

About Author

Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, part-time coach. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

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