In a recent catch and release Blue Shark fishing tournament Melisse Merlim of Port Harbor Marina saw a disturbing sight. A young Blue Shark had previously swum through a “bait band.” Bait bands are exceptionally tough rubber bands used to hold bait for lobster traps. Realizing the band, already constricting the shark visibly; would eventually kill it; Melisse and her crew set out in an attempt to save it. It took catching the young shark three times before they were able to bring it onto the boat and safely cut off the band, thus saving the shark from an otherwise slow, painful, death.
In an interview with Melisse Merlim, when asked, “why go through all the trouble to save something you knew could and given the chance would harm you?” She replied, “I don’t know it just seemed like the right thing to do.” This kind of righteousness and selflessness for creatures: that many would shy away from; gives a shining example for the rest of us to follow.