What do you know about sharks?
Victims of many prejudices and often, the unwitting stars of scary suspense movies, sharks are the great lords of the world’s oceans and seas. However, far from being the bloodthirsty predators depicted through Hollywood film scripts, they, in fact, have much more to fear than any human: Almost 100 million sharks are killed every year, that’s 11,000 per day!
But how can we distinguish facts from fiction? The facts show that sharks are extraordinary predators and have adapted extremely well to their environment for over 400 million years now. Contrary to popular belief, the great majority (80%) of the species, never reach more than 2 metres in length. Of the approximate 450 different species identified today, only a dozen have been found to be potentially dangerous for humans.
Sharks are essential to the health and balance of our oceans; without them, complete ecosystems could crumble, thus irreversibly changing the fragile balance which exists between predators and prey. Most sharks are vulnerable to over exploitation because they grow very slowly, attaining their maturity late and therefore having a low birthrate.
A more in-depth knowledge of their ecological role as well as a heightened awareness of their present condition constitute different tools, which, we hope, will protect and preserve these marvels of evolution.