The Queensland government has failed to obtain rights to use nets and drum lines to catch and kill sharks near the Great Barrier Reef.

The state government had launched an appeal to maintain its controversial shark management program, but it was dismissed in the Federal Court in Sydney.

An Administrative Appeals Tribunal decision in early April upheld a challenge to the program in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park by the Humane Society.

The tribunal found that the scientific evidence about “the lethal component” of the shark control program overwhelmingly showed it does not reduce the risk of an unprovoked shark attack.

The authority will now have to carry out the program in a way that avoids killing sharks to the “greatest extent possible”.

The park can only authorise the euthanasia of sharks caught on drum lines on animal welfare grounds.

All tiger, bull and white sharks caught on drum lines are to be tagged before being released.

Additionally, sharks caught on drum lines must be attended to as soon as possible.