No, You Can’t Keep A Hammerhead Shark In Your Basement Pool

Image courtesy of DEC NY

We know it might be tempting to make your own Sharknado at home, but not only is it illegal to keep certain exotic sharks in a pool as pets, but it’s not good for the big fish, either. That’s why officials in New York have removed a bunch of sharks from a resident’s home after finding them in a DIY aquarium in the basement.

Department of Environmental Conservation officers executed a search warrant at a Lagrangeville, NY, home last month on a tip that the home might be hosting illegal wildlife.

In the basement of the home, officials found seven live sandbar sharks, two dead leopard sharks, and a dead hammerhead shark in a 15-foot aboveground pool.

Wildlife Conservation Society staff, as well as workers from the Long Island Aquarium caught the sharks, took blood, measured and tagged them, and then transferred them to a special truck outfitted with plastic tanks. They were then “escorted” to the Long Island Aquarium in Riverhead to recover until the investigation is closed.

Investigators believe the sharks were being bred for sale to private collectors. It’s illegal to fish for sandbar sharks or own them on the east coast without a special permit.

And in case you’re wondering, no, this kind of discovery is not normal.

“I’ve seen crocodiles, snakes, some stingrays, and I know there was another case that they had alligators,” Dutchess County SPCA officer Kimberly McNamee told CBS2. “No sharks.”

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time we’ve heard of a shark losing its life in an aboveground pool: Back in 2013, Kmart was forced to apologize after a white-tipped shark died in a backyard pool the retailer had set up so it could use the fish in a commercial shoot.

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