‘Biggest Predator in the Sea? U! Go Vegan’ Banner to Fly Over Wilmington Beaches

PETA Message Comes After Sharks Bite Three Humans This Summer

For Immediate Release:
July 5, 2019

Contact:
Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382

Wilmington, N.C. – This weekend, a massive PETA banner proclaiming, “Biggest Predator in the Sea? U! Go Vegan,” will fly over the southern beaches of North Carolina, where three humans were bitten by sharks last month.

When:    Saturday, July 6, and Sunday, July 7

Where:    The plane will depart North Myrtle Beach shortly after 11 a.m., reach Bald Head Island shortly after noon, reach Wilmington around 1:30 p.m., and circle the area’s busiest beaches until 3 p.m.

“By far, the biggest predators in the water are the humans who catch, kill, and consume trillions of marine animals every year,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA’s banner will encourage beachgoers to protect all swimmers, including those with fins, by staying away from seafood buffets.”

Humans slaughter nearly 100 million sharks each year and consume more fish annually than all other animals used for food combined. The demand for shark-fin soup has resulted in overfishing and dwindling shark populations. Shark finning entails dragging the animals—who studies show have individual personalities—to the surface, hacking off their fins, and throwing them back into the ocean, leaving them to die slowly from their injuries, stress, or suffocation.

Most fish commonly served in restaurants and supermarkets are caught using huge—sometimes miles-long—commercial fishing nets that stretch across ocean floors, also trapping animals the industry calls “trash catch,” such as dolphins, turtles, and seals. When hauled up from the ocean, fish—who are highly sensitive to pain—are often crushed to death and their eyeballs bulge out of their heads because of the pressure change caused by suddenly surfacing. Others are gutted alive.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. The group offers free vegan starter kits and encourages everyone to try healthy, humane vegan meals such as Gardein’s delicious Golden Fishless Filets.

Photos of the banner in action will be available upon request this weekend. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.

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“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind