A resort town in Brazil hopes a steel-and-plastic net will stop piranhas from taking a bite out of bathers -- and its tourism industry.
Authorities in Palmas in central Brazil say 180 cases of bathers at the resort being bitten by piranhas have been reported so far this year at La Prata beach on an artificial lake that is a major tourist draw.
The figure is three times more than in all of last year.
Town development chief Milton Neres blamed the surge in bites on a booming piranha population as the fish increasingly use the reservoir as a breeding ground.
"They weren't attacks by groups of piranhas but of a single one biting someone's foot. Still, the number of cases is increasing and we live off tourism," Neres said on Monday by telephone.
Neres said the town is installing a US$11,300 net to protect bathers on the artificial lake, which is formed with water from the Tocantins river.
The net, fastened to more than 100 wooden posts forming a half-moon extending nearly 250m off La Prata beach, will be fully installed by this weekend, Neres said.
Authorities will then patrol the waters inside the swimming area. The will then catch and relocate any piranha they find.
He said the town expects 280,000 visitors in the July-August high season, but ruled out eradicating the piranhas.
"It's about combining protection for our swimmers while caring for the species," Neres said.
‘CONFESSED’: A court in Beijing said that former CCP member Ren Zhiqiang abused his power at a state firm and embezzled almost US$7.14 million of public funds A Chinese tycoon who called Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) a clown and criticized his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic was yesterday jailed for 18 years for corruption, bribery and embezzlement of public funds. Ren Zhiqiang (任志強) — once among the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) inner circle — disappeared from the public eye in March, shortly after penning an essay that lambasted Xi’s pandemic response. His outspokenness had earned the former chairman of state-owned property developer Huayuan Group the nickname “Big Cannon.” Yesterday’s verdict said that Ren embezzled almost 50 million yuan (US$7.4 million) of public funds and accepted bribes worth 1.25 million
OFF BORDER ISLAND: The fisheries official disappeared from a patrol vessel wearing a life jacket and leaving behind his shoes, indicating an intentional move, Seoul said North Korean soldiers shot dead a suspected South Korean defector at sea and burned his body as a COVID-19 precaution after he was interrogated in the water over several hours, Seoul military officials said yesterday. It is the first killing of a South Korean citizen by North Korean forces for a decade, and comes with Pyongyang at high alert over the COVID-19 pandemic and inter-Korean relations at a standstill. The fisheries official disappeared from a patrol vessel near the western border island of Yeonpyeong on Monday, the official said. More than 24 hours later, North Korean forces located him in their waters and
The scarcity of commercial flights landing at Sydney Airport has been a disaster for airlines and workers, but for hobby pilots the COVID-19 pandemic has provided the opportunity of a lifetime. The quieter-than-usual runways mean that private pilots have been given the chance to land at the international airport for the first time. When Sydney Flight College club captain Tim Lindley put out a call, he received an overwhelming response. He eventually organized for 14 light aircraft to fly into Sydney airport on Sunday. “For a lot of the pilots involved, including myself, it was a childhood dream to land in a big
ACADEMIC FREEDOM: One professor told her students to submit anonymized papers and not to record any online classes. Some US schools have announced similar steps Students at Oxford University specializing in the study of China are being asked to submit some papers anonymously to protect them from the possibility of retribution under the sweeping new security law introduced three months ago in Hong Kong. The anonymity ruling is to be applied in classes, and group tutorials are to be replaced by one-to-ones. Students are also to be warned that it will be viewed as a disciplinary offence if they tape classes or share them with outside groups. The Hong Kong National Security Law was imposed on June 30 by Beijing after more than a year of pro-democracy