Surfer who survived brutal shark attack finally given legal exemption to keep one of the animal's teeth as a souvenir

Originally published at: Surfer who survived brutal shark attack finally given legal exemption to keep one of the animal's teeth as a souvenir | Boing Boing


Blowes, 32, lost his leg and was in a coma for 10 days.



Technically, the shark gave it to him.


Is there anyway to apply this to police violence? I would love to see some toothless cops.


Don’t sharks just shed their teeth like hot cakes? Seems weird to make it illegal


Yeah, we’re like picking them up off the beach all the time. How is this illegal?


I hear that in most cases you’re allowed to keep any bullets that the ER surgeon is unable to remove from your spinal column.


The idea is that if you’re allowed to buy and sell parts of endangered animals then there’s nothing to stop people from hunting great white sharks to sell their teeth as souvenir trinkets and claiming they “found” them.

Similarly, dead sea mammals wash up on my local beach all the time, but since the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 it’s been illegal to collect their body parts (such as a sea lion skull) unless you have a special permit to do so.

Obviously the people who wrote those laws probably didn’t have this exact scenario in mind.


I’d let him keep the whole fuckin’ shark after that.



No way…sucks that he lost a leg and was hurt but consider this:


Dressing like their favourite food and then splashing about in their house is a touch impolite.


Yup. Nobody criticises lions if someone wanders into a pride’s hunting territory and suffers the consequences, so surfing or swimming in waters where Great Whites, Bronze Whalers, Oceanic White-tips or any of the Requiem sharks are known to frequent, then there should be no reprisals against the sharks; they’re apex predators and quite possibly the most perfectly adapted predator to its environment.


It can be inferred from the shark’s actions that it intended to put its tooth in/on the surfer dude, so a law intended to prevent people from TAKING shark’s teeth from them really shouldn’t apply. Also, tooth paid in full, in the ‘pound of flesh’ sense. Shark intended to take leg. Surfer intended (after the fact) to take tooth. Shark gave tooth. Surfer gave leg. Sounds like the ‘meeting of the minds’ required for a valid contract.


Man, not to victim blame, but I grew up next to the ocean, and if we had great whites, I’d be terrified to go in the water on a board. By the time they figure out that you’re not a seal/sea lion, it’s too late.

But yeah, accidental on the shark’s part. How can you tell? After the leg came off, it didn’t come back to eat the rest.


A leg can be very filling. If I get the drumstick off the Thanksgiving turkey I’m not going to try to take the rest of the bird when I go back for seconds.


This is very much like disincentivising ivory poachers by eradicating the market - can’t sell the ivory so where’s the profit in killing elephants… this is a good thing but perhaps a little nuance in the laws would see this case as an exception!

A good example of this playing out has to do with the over fishing of the oceans and that in Australia there is a loophole that allows any shark to be sold as flake (which is specifically gummy shark) a favorite in ‘fish and chips’. Unscrupulous fishers can sell any shark to market if branded as ‘flake’…

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We were walking on the beach at Tofino (west coast of Vancouver Island) a few years ago and saw a dead eagle on the sand. I was hoping to run into a First Nations person to tell them about it, since afaik they can legally possess claws, feathers, and other parts.

Otherwise, in Toronto I am committing a crime by picking up one of the Canada goose feathers that litter our parks and waterfront.

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Except… this is almost exactly why lions have been hunted nearly to extinction… and wolves, and bears, and…

hmm… are you an aquatic apex predator that weighs in at a couple of tons?

Then, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that your pitiful commitment to Thanksgiving overindulgence doesn’t exactly scale.

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