SHARKS IN THE ROUGH

The Gold Coast Bulletin - - FRONT PAGE - CAMP­BELL GELLIE camp­[email protected]

GREG Nor­man was just a baby shark when he first walked around the Coolan­gatta and Tweed Heads Golf Club and now there are two new preda­tory fish pa­trolling the course.

Two baby sharks have been spot­ted in the ponds be­tween the sixth and sev­enth hole.

Club vice-cap­tain and course ranger Pe­ter Fran­cis said he spot­ted the sharks six feet from the edge of the course where Greg Nor­man – the Great White Shark – won the 1986 Queens­land Open.

“My re­search, which could be com­pletely out, sug­gests they were leop­ard sharks about two feet long and there were two of them,” Mr Fran­cis said. “You could see them and it was ob­vi­ous they were sharks.”

Mr Fran­cis said the ponds along the course are tidal, with drains run­ning di­rectly into the Tweed River.

“The grates block the rub­bish com­ing in so we end up with mul­let swim­ming in and get­ting too big to swim back out,” he said.

“The sharks must have come in, have been there for a while and are now too big to get out.”

They are now trapped in a pond about the size of 10 sub­ur­ban swim­ming pools.

“If we don’t see the mul­let jump­ing then we know the sharks have eaten all of them,” Mr Fran­cis said.

Club cap­tain An­drew Boul­ter, a for­mer golf pro, used to work at the Car­book club near Bris­bane, which is fa­mous for its bull­shark in the wa­ter haz­ard.

He said he would like Coolan­gatta and Tweed Heads Gold Club to use its new sharks to at­tract more play­ers.

“If we get pho­tos of them we could host shark days and de­cide on a name for them,” he said. “The videos of sharks in the ponds at Car­brook went vi­ral.”

He said they would con­sider putting up a sign alert­ing peo­ple sharks were in the wa­ter and to be care­ful when re­triev­ing their balls.

“We will have divers come and get the balls out in a cou­ple of months so we will have to warn them about the sharks too,” he said.

Pic­ture: DIG­I­TALLY AL­TERED

Gold Coast Bul­letin re­porter Camp­bell Gellie had no luck try­ing to hook the golf course sharks yes­ter­day.

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