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TORONTO - An island community on Lake Ontario expressed a mix of relief and frustration Wednesday after a video which had many wondering if a shark was lurking nearby turned out to be an elaborate marketing ploy. The clip made waves across the province and beyond, with many offering opinions on what they were seeing, although experts agreed the creature on camera wasn't a fresh-water-friendly bull shark but likely a large catfish.
The matter even came up at Ontario's legislature, where the governing Liberals cheekily noted there was no need to strike a Jaws-like task force, but asked residents to stay safe and report any sightings to the Natural Resources Ministry. It was only on Wednesday afternoon that Discovery Canada, which is owned by broadcasting giant Bell Media, said a finned creature which momentarily surfaced while three men fished off a dock was in fact a life-like prosthetic model of a shark.
The channel said the video — which was posted on YouTube July 10 — was the first stage of a marketing campaign to promote an upcoming programing series on sharks. But for local residents on Wolfe Island, where the video was supposed to have been filmed, the entire matter was one that set some on edge.