7.10 All About Sharks and Their Relatives!
Why Do Sharks Attack?
- Mistaken identity is often believed to be the cause of most attacks.
- They could be thinking a surfer is a seal or a sea lion, but their vision has been proven to be quite well.
- The majority of shark attacks is seen as gentle affairs so if it was a mistake of identity, then it would have been much more aggressive.
- Meaning that most attacks are probably their way of investigating.
- Since they do not have hands, they must use their mouth, which causes the "attacks" on accident.
Statistics About Shark Attacks.
- Worldwide there are probably 70-100 shark attacks annually resulting in about 5-15 deaths.
- 68% of attacks on divers had full wetsuits rather than normal swimsuits.
- 64% were wearing grey or black wetsuits.
- Florida has the most shark attacks.
- Great White, Tiger and Bull sharks cause the most unprovoked attacks.
How To Avoid Attacks.
- Always swim in a group. Sharks most often attack lone individuals.
- Don't wander too far from shore. Doing so isolates you and places you away from assistance.
- Avoid the water at night, dawn, or dusk. Many sharks are most active at these times and are better able to find you than you are to see them.
- Don't enter the water if bleeding. Sharks can smell and taste blood, and trace it back to its source.
- Don't wear shiny jewelry. The reflected light looks like shining fish scales.
- Don't go into waters containing sewage. Sewage attracts bait fishes, which in turn attract sharks.
- Avoid waters being fished and those with lots of bait fishes. Diving seabirds are good indicators of such activities.
- Don't enter the water if sharks are present. Leave immediately if sharks are seen.
- Avoid an uneven tan and brightly colored clothing. Sharks see contrast particularly well, so use extra caution when waters are cloudy.
- Don't splash a lot. Also, keep pets out of the water. Erratic movements can attract sharks.
- Use care near sandbars or steep drop-offs. These are favorite hangouts for sharks.
- Don't relax just because porpoises are nearby. Sightings of porpoises do not indicate the absence of sharks. Both often eat the same foods.
- Don't try to touch a shark if you see one!
- If attacked by a shark, the general rule is "Do whatever it takes to get away!" Some people have successfully chosen to be aggressive, others passive. Some yelled underwater, others blew bubbles. I personally would go down fighting.