Mystery as dozens of dead sharks wash up on Queensland beach

Tom Flanagan

A concerned beachgoer wants to know why dozens of dead sharks have washed up on the shore near Mackay in north Queensland.

Lance Payne, 54, first discovered the carcasses in November when he took a trip to Louisa Creek beach at Hay Point to remove lumps of coal washed up from from a nearby coal terminal.

"They were strewn all over the beach... it was really alarming," Payne told Yahoo7.

Dozens of sharks have washed up on the Queenland beach including this hammerhead. Source: Supplied

Payne, a nearby resident in Mackay, returned to the beach a fortnight later on December 3 and was once again faced with the alarming sight with around eight dead sharks scattered on the beach.

"This time there was a mix of species, including a baby hammerhead shark. I was so disappointed to see it killed at such a young age," he said.

Payne initially thought they had been sacrificed for a Chinese delicacy but has since entertained several other theories.

Payne was distressed as to how many baby sharks he found. Source: Supplied

"First thing I thought is they are being killed for shark fin soup but I reckon it's most likely commercial fishing.

"They end up as waste in fishing nets before being flung back into the water dead."

Payne is a keen environmentalist and spends considerable time concentrating on the effects the local coal mining industry has on the area.

Payne has speculated the cause of the shocking occurrence. Source: Supplied

He has pointed to coal's effect of reducing oxygen levels in water as to another possible reason for the occurrence.

Regardless of the cause, Payne, a construction site manager, was adamant this kind of thing shouldn't be happening.

"Why are people killing these young sharks? Its just not right."