Two hammerhead sharks filmed cruising inside nets at Australia’s most famous beach have reignited debate about the effectiveness of the control measure.

“Great to see they diverted the nets safely,” he wrote, identifying one of the sharks as a well-known local called Homer and the other as potentially his “girlfriend”.

The two animals were seen circling each other for portions of the video.

The hammerhead sharks were spotted "just before sunrise" and no swimmers were in the area.
The hammerhead sharks were spotted “just before sunrise” and no swimmers were in the area. (Instagram: @dronesharkapp)

Three species of hammerheads are found in Australian waters but only the great hammerhead is considered dangerous, although attacks by the animals are relatively rare.

Dr Leonardo Guida, a shark scientist and conservationist at the Australian Marine Conservation Society, told 9news.com.au the nets have a devastating toll on marine life.

“Hammerhead species are threatened in Australian waters,” he explained.

“Two of the largest, scalloped and great hammerheads, are endangered and are protected species.

“The fact these two were spotted on the beach-side of the net shows how outdated and ineffective this measure is.”

A number of rays were caught and killed in shark nets across NSW beaches.
Marine life, other than sharks, often gets trapped in shark nets, making the control measure the subject of repeated debate. (Sea Shepard Australia)

Wildlife scientist Dr Vanessa Pirotta also said the measure isn’t as effective as it could be.

“Shark nets do not create a total barrier between sharks and swimmers,” she told 9news.com.au.

“Sharks are able to swim around them, this is why we sometimes see sharks and other marine life inside of the nets.”

Effectiveness of shark nets questioned after fatal Sydney attack.
There are 51 shark nets are installed in beaches between Newcastle and Wollongong. (9News)

The bid was ultimately rejected by the NSW government.

Guida added drone spotters are proving to be an effective and modern tool to help locate sharks off beaches.

There are 51 shark nets installed at beaches between Newcastle and Wollongong, a 250-kilometre stretch of coast.

The nets – measuring around 150 metres long, six metres high and set at a depth of about 10 metres – are in place between September to April each year.

9news.com.au has reached out to NSW DPI,who insisted the nets were effective.

“These beaches are netted by contractors using specially designed meshing nets to reduce the chances of shark encounters,” a spokesperson said.

“The nets do not create a total barrier between swimmers and sharks. They are designed to intercept sharks near meshed beaches, which reduces the chance of a shark interaction.

“While the nets cannot provide a guarantee that a shark interaction will never happen, they have been effective in greatly reducing the potential number of interactions.

“Since the introduction of the Shark Meshing Program there has only been one human fatality while the nets were in place.”

Shark leaps onto front of boat during fishing trip

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