Video Credit: AsiaWire
This viral video with over a million views shows big-hearted fishermen releasing a shark back into the ocean after turning down fishmongers who wanted to make soup from its fins.
The shark, the species of which was not mention, was accidentally caught in a fishing net off Nansan Island in Zhanjiang City in China’s southern Guangdong Province.
Footage shows the fishermen and their crew freeing the predator, which is said to have weighed up to half a tonne, before dragging it back into the South China Sea.
Pictures Credit: AsiaWire
It had been caught together with a shoal of pomfrets (Parastromateus niger) and unwittingly hauled ashore on 9th April.
According to reports, local fishmongers immediately offered to buy the shark’s fins from the anglers, after which the animal would certainly have been thrown back into the ocean and left for dead.
However, the fishermen turned down the offer and instead helped the shark back into the ocean their boat’s capstan winch.
Members of the public have praised the islanders for their actions.
Shark fin soup is a Chinese delicacy that has been around since the Song Dynasty (960 to 1279 AD).
However, consumption of the dish has seen a rapid decline in the last decade thanks to celebrity-endorsed public awareness campaigns and government crackdowns.
In 2012, China’s State Council formally struck shark fin soup off the menus of all official banquets, where it was once considered a staple.