Sharks are of some of the most beautiful, mysterious, and dangerous creatures that dwell within the depths of the ocean. Though commonly associated to just be another fish, sharks are actually classified as being a elasmobranch fish which in short means their bodies are made up of cartilage rather than bone. While yes beautiful, and incredibly interesting, most sharks are very unpredictable and we urge you to stay on the side of caution when swimming in the ocean.
Why Sharks Attack Humans
Contrary to popular belief "and Jaws" humans are not apart of a sharks natural diet; and thus when shark attacks occur it's typically by accident. Attacks are usually driven by cases of mistaken identity; such as when a surfer is on their board paddling, during this motion sharks commonly mistake surfers for seals and will attack. In times low visibility it's incredibly hard for a shark to see through the sediment and if surprised will instinctively bite to figure out what it is that it ran into. Though there are certainly times were unprovoked killings have happened between shark and human, that percentage is incredibly low and shouldn't be viewed as an ocean deterrent.
How to Avoid Shark Attacks
Though we can never fully eliminate the possibility of a shark attack, we can certainly mitigate the risk associated with going into the ocean; and here are some helpful tips to do just that.
- Never swim alone, shark attacks typically occur when individuals are isolated.
- Ensure you avoid the water at dawn, dusk, and in the evening. These are times were sharks have been shown to be most active.
- Avoid areas with heavy amounts of fishing and baiting. The abundance of small prey in this area make it ideal hunting grounds for sharks
- Do not enter the water while bleeding, and yes this goes for when women are menstruating as well
- If attacked and faced with no other option, aim for the sharks nose or eyes and begin to hit it; you can also "if able" stick your arm in the sharks gills to get it to release.
The most important thing to remember when going out in the water is that it is NOT our home; and therefore we should be respectful of it and it's inhabitants. When visiting the ocean it's crucial that you remember, you're an outsider, and should not expect to be immune to shark attacks if willingly going into the water.