What a beautiful creature! This is a picture of a 6 ft. Reef Shark my husband took
while diving off Little Cayman, with the family, August 2007. This shark was
minding his own business and we did not feed it anything!
This is totally a personal post as it does not relate to real estate, but as an avid scuba diver, I just have to say something about this. Recently, a scuba diver was bitten by a Bull Shark off the coast of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and died. He was diving with the same dive operator that I dived with on my trip to that area about 2 years ago. That could be another post altogether, but to avoid getting into all the details, I will say I was not impressed with that operation.
Anyway, I have long been opposed to divers and dive operations that do the “Shark Dives”. These dives almost always include “chumming” the water to increase the odds of meeting up with sharks. This is becoming a popular dive as it does get your adrenaline going, I am sure. I also cringe when we watch those “Shark Week” shows on TV which always show (extremely stupid) divers that hand-feed various species of sharks. HELLO!!!
I remember, as a kid, watching those shows on “The Wonderful World of Disney” about Yellowstone. I thought it was great how the cars would be lined up on the roads while wild bears in large numbers were walking around them, climbing on the cars, looking inside. I wanted to go there so badly to experience that activity. I wanted a bear to climb on my car, or should I say, my parent’s car?
Not long after that however, we started learning that even though Yellowstone had a policy of “Do Not Feed The Bears”, people were feeding them anyway. How many people got great photos of a bear taking food from thier hand, up close and personal. It was cool and I am sure it was a “rush”. Now though, by experience, we have learned that even though it was cute, fun, and exciting, the bears were still wild, unpredictable animals. When people did not have food readily available for the bears, the bears would attack and harm the people. I have seen video coverage of bears that can rip a car door off it’s hinges as easily as I can open a can of Pringles Potato Chips. It was not so cute anymore. The saddest part is, these bears almost always have to be destroyed once they become too familiar with humans. That familiarity is bred from feeding them and getting them accustomed to the idea that, where there are people, there is food.
Can we not learn from this experience as it relates to sharks as well? Sharks are dangerous, wild, unpredictable and even less is known about them than bears. We need rules about feeding them the same as we do about feeding bears and other wild animals. As a woman that dives with her family, I do not want sharks associating humans with food. We get enough of that by accident evidenced by the various number of shark attacks around the world each year. It is exciting to see a shark in the wild and every one that I have come across (without chumming) while diving seems to want nothing more than to be left alone. I want to keep it that way! I do not want to be 60 ft down with my 12 yr old daughter, to run across a shark that has been taught to come up close and ask me, ”Where’s the grub?”
I believe this practise is endangering the lives of humans and sharks alike. As more and more sharks learn, or are “taught”, by these stupid people that “if you see a human in the water, there will be food,” shark attacks will increase. This will make it more dangerous to enjoy all water sports associated with our wonderful, beautiful oceans as well as cause an increase in shark hunting/killing. Either result is a sad result when common sense would prevent it all.
DON’T FEED THE SHARKS!!!!!