It appears the unintended consequences of protecting seals doesn’t end with depleted fish stocks. Cape Cod in 2012 experienced its first shark attack (from a great white) in 75 years. According to Greg Skomal, a marine biologist with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, “Sharks like to eat seals and because the gray seal population has really grown dramatically in the last couple of years, they’re targeting them.”
As a result of protecting seals, fishing stocks are being depleted, sharks are being attracted to family beaches and some fishermen are going out of business.
John Tommasi of Windham is senior lecturer of economics and director of the Academic Learning Center at Bentley University in Waltham. Contact him at johntommasi.com.