Florida wildlife officials said they have identified the people involved in the unsettling shark-dragging video circulating on social media over the past two days.
- Wildlife officials ID people in unsettling shark-dragging video
- Video shows shark being dragged behind fast-moving boat
- Social media commenters are upset over animal cruelty
The video is making its rounds on social media, and many commenters are upset over its contents.
In the video, a group of men on a boat is seen smiling, laughing and pointing at the shark as it flails in the wake behind a fast-moving boat.
A repost of the video on Facebook alone garnered hundreds of comments — many of them not appropriate to share — but most of them expressing anger over the animal cruelty.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's law enforcement division said Tuesday afternoon that the agency has gotten a "strong response" from the public on the video.
"The FWC takes this very seriously and is currently investigating this incident," Chad Weber, an FWC spokesman, said via email Wednesday. "The FWC has identified the individuals in the video and would like to thank the public for their assistance. Per normal protocol, while this investigation is ongoing, the agency will not be confirming the identities of the individuals involved."
Weber said it's too early to speculate as to what, if any, violations took place.
"However, the FWC would like to state that the lack of respect shown in this video for our precious natural resources is disheartening and disturbing, and is not representative of conservation-minded anglers around the world," Weber said.
Anyone with information on the video's contents is asked to contact FWC at 1-888-404-3922 or email Tip@MyFWC.com. Tipsters can remain anonymous.