“There’s a legend that says a gnome was once wondering around the coast of Western Australia, when a strange magical force called him to this place, now known as Gnomesville, 30 minutes away from local city of Bunbury. It was not long until more and more gnomes followed in his footsteps. Now, thousands of gnomes quietly reside in this enchanted place.”
Gnomesville is open to visitors all year round. Locals encourage tourists to bring their own gnomes, or even entire families of gnomes, to add to the attraction. Some people add funny (and often painfully punny) signs along with their gnomes. A new gnome can be positioned wherever you like so long as no other gnomes are harmed in the process. Damaging a gnome is said to bring bad luck, so being careful is extra important.
Gnomesvile is also home to one surprising non-gnome guest: E.T., the stranded alien from Steven Spielberg’s 1982 film E.T. the Extraterrestrial. Visitors are invited to try to located E.T. and help him try to…wait for it…phone gnome:
amateur diver and photographer, Amanda Brewer, 26, took a stunning
picture of a great white shark whilst on an cage diving tour. However
after uploading it she has copped some flack.
This has lead to
some debate about the ethical treatment of Great White Sharks on this
tours as they were supposed to be swimming around the cage not flying
headfirst into it.
“I wasn’t afraid at all,” Brewer
says of her encounter while cage diving. “Once you see them up
close, you gain an enormous respect for them. They’re beautiful,
powerful, and intelligent, and it erases all the fear.”
some passionate individuals from a White Shark facebook group has
posted how this could have potentially been dangerous for the shark
as it can’t be good for them to be flying into cages all day. Legally
the tours have strict guidelines on interacting with these animals in
the wild and they are meant to be swimming around the cages
was rebuttal-ed by a Marine Biologist, Gregory
Skomal,“These are remarkably tough animals,” he adds.
“I have seen them heavily scarred up by each other, with parts
having been bitten off, and they have an amazing capacity to heal.”
Even more interesting is whether this
ecotourism is doing more harm than good by associating people with
food for the sharks, though this has been dismissed in a paper
published in the British Ecological Society’s Functional Ecology
titled, “Don’t bite the hand that feeds: Assessing ecological
impacts of provisioning ecotourism on an apex marine predator “ .
There is still a general concern of altering the natural ecosystem by
having sharks continually be stimulated , regardless whether if they
get the bait by human presence.