Video of shark used as bong lands Australian fisherman in hot water

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By Minyvonne Burke  with NBC News World News
Video of shark used as bong lands Australian fisherman in hot water

A fisherman in Australia is facing backlash after a Facebook video showed him using what appears to be a small dead shark as a makeshift bong.

The disturbing video was posted to an account named Fried Fishing Australia — which follows the antics of a group of fisherman — and showed a young man wearing a "Fried Fishing" hat lighting a bowl by the fish's head, inhaling from a pipe near its tail and blowing smoke in the air before smiling at the camera. Police in Australia have not confirmed that the shark used for the bong was real.

The video, which sparked a furious reaction from social media users, has since been removed from the group's Facebook page, but was uploaded on other sites.

"The monster in this video is the one in the hat - it isn't the shark," the nonprofit organization Oceans' Keepers wrote on Facebook after sharing the video on its page. The organization fights to remove shark traps from the Australia coast.

A Twitter user by the name of Katie said the video was "sickening."

"Desecrating a dead body of a shark for a bong?! ... I'm glad people are outraged over this. It has to stop. We need to be better than morons like this," she tweeted.

Another Twitter user named Pac urged people to "have some respect for your fellow creatures."

Fried Fishing, who has 25,000 followers on Facebook, seemed to defend the video, writing in a post on the social media site that the shark was caught on Friday and was dead by the time the video was filmed, according to local news outlet

The group also said the substance the fisherman was smoking was tobacco.

The fisherman seen in the video also seemed to respond to the backlash, writing in a Facebook post on Monday that he has received death threats over the video and was taking a break from social media.

"Due to todays recent events i have to walk away from social media my mental health is way more important," the since-deleted post read.

In a Snapchat video on Tuesday, the fisherman said he thought the drama would "blow over by now," but it hasn't.