Maltese biologists, environmentalists and Mellieħa residents have been left distraught after discovering at least two mutilated shark heads in a field.
“What the hell is going on on this country,” biologist and pest controller Arnold Sciberras said alongside images of the grisly find. “Walking in the countryside and what do you find? Two massive sixgill shark (Hexanchus sp) heads freshly chopped off.”
Having visited the site, he noted that they had been removed from the rest of their bodies which have yet to be located. Sciberras told Lovin Malta that the stench in the area was unbearable, potentially leading to more pests being attracted there.
“Such vulnerable species treated as if they are garbage,” he continued. “This is pure murder. Is this the future we are leaving our children? Where is the protection for such species! Truly pissed off!”
Warning – graphic images below:
While other shark specialists are investigating the find further, there is the possibility that the heads were removed and dumped as such because the shark meat from their bodies was being sold as a different type of meat, such as swordfish.
“It could also be for personal consumption, but I highly doubt it,” he said.
Sharks are a protected species in Malta.
Following the find, Sciberras has urged people to treat their fellow animals with greater respect.
“As a naturalist, I’m ashamed to find these things in the countryside – and as a pest controller I’m concerned,” he ended.