Great white shark dies after just three days in an aquarium in Japan

Great White Shark
Great White Shark


A great white shark has died after barely three days in a Japanese aquarium.

The 11ft 6in (3.5m) shark, which was accidentally caught in a net in south-western Japan on Tuesday, died early on Friday, according to Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium.

Keeping a great white shark in captivity is extremely difficult as it needs to swim constantly to get oxygen and maintain its body temperature.


Japan Aquarium
Japan Aquarium




An official for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) Asia criticised keeping the shark in captivity as "cruel and wrong".

"The cause of death is clear: captivity. The shark never had to die like this," said Jason Baker, Peta's vice president of international campaigns.

Peta were not the only ones to criticise Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium's decision to contain the animal, many others had expressed their opposition on social media.

 Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium's Facebook
(Facebook/Screenshot)
 Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium's Facebook
(Facebook/Screenshot)
 Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium's Facebook
(Facebook/Screenshot)

Aquarium researcher Keiichi Sato said the aquarium abides by Japanese and international laws and believes its efforts contribute to education and science.

"Many visitors had asked us to exhibit the great white shark," he said in a telephone interview from Okinawa.

The captured shark, a male, was relatively small, and had appeared to be doing well, swimming with several other sharks. However it had refused to eat a single thing since its arrival and suddenly weakened and sank to the bottom of the tank.

Efforts to give it oxygen in a separate special tank failed and the cause of death is under investigation.



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