A Different View on Sharks

Macie P. p-2

A shark swims deep below the shadows of the shore, human legs dangle over him as they swim over the drop off. The sharks deep and cold black eyes are fixed on these careless teenagers as his slick shape darts through the water. What people don't realize is that most of these shark attacks are caused by a mistaken identity, so fear leads to false conclusions about sharks.

The most commonly thought of shark is the great white when it comes to shark attacks. They are the most dangerous predator in the sea. Although they have claimed a very scary reputation, it's not their fault. When a great white is out hunting and see a human their first reaction is to go after them because they think it is a seal. Due to their sharp teeth used for tearing the tough skin off of their prey, when they bite into a human and realize its no food they swim away but the victim usually ends of bleeding to death.

On average, there are about 64 to 80 shark attacks each year. The few shark attacks that do occur are very rare. The chances of being attacked by a shark are one in 11.5 million. People have a better chance of being killed by lightning. The most common places of shark attacks are around deep drop-offs, sandbars, and around commercial or sport fishermen. When sharks do stay close around the shore is either because their prey is there or they are trapped between two sandbars during low tide.

Whenever humans are attacked by sharks, its almost never because they were hungry and would eat anything including a human. Even though sharks are carnivores they do not eat people. They will eat sea urchins, crabs, fish, rays, seals, birds, and sometimes other sharks. But even if there isn't a bunch of food available, they won't be in a close bind. Sharks don't eat until they have digested their last meal, and most sharks diets are different from each others anyways,so there will almost never be a lack of food unless something drastic happened. Some sharks eat prey with hard shells with flat, but powerful, teeth. Other sharks, such as the great white, hunt larger prey, but that does not include humans. Some sharks even just eat tiny krill.

Although most sharks are viewed as dangerous, some species of sharks are endangered. For example, people have been killing great whites to make shark fin soup. Scientists in America are trying to bring them back, and due to conservation projects they have been coming back in good numbers. Most sharks aren't seen during their migration seasons due to the pattern that causes them to swim towards warmer water or where food is greater in numbers.

Even though some people are killed by sharks, we shouldn't be afraid of these innocent creatures because it wasn't their fault most of the time. So, instead of thinking sharks are just blood thirsty fish, we should know that they are only trying to survive.


Scholastic Scope the Language Arts Magazine-Saving the Great White Monster By: Lauren Tarshis

The Gale Encyclopedia of Science, 2014


Great White Comeback: the number of great white sharks in the water around the U.S. is growing--and scientists say that's good news by: Samantha McCann Scholastic/ Weekly Reader Edition516.October 6,2014

Theworld and I online Minimizing the Risk of Shark Attacks January 2004