Airline pilots whose planes have been grounded by the pandemic are flying drones above beaches to spot sharks in a surveillance mission prompted by a sudden leap in fatal attacks last year.
Among those recruited to fly long-range drones that can monitor multiple beaches in four-hour flying sorties are Qantas A380 pilots whose 570-tonne aircraft are in storage in America.
Eight people were killed by sharks in Australia last year — the deadliest year in almost a century. Desperate to limit attacks over the summer, the government of New South Wales has tripled its spending on preventing shark attacks to $21.4 million (£11.5 million).
The long-range drones replace smaller craft that flew for 30 minutes before needing a battery recharge.
The number of drones on