Have you ever found yourself wondering what a certain kind of shark is like? Discovery hosts a Shark Week every summer, but even a week of TV programming can’t cover every species of this amazing order of animal. Plus once the week is over, all you’re left with is the same old Discovery Channel as before.
What if you wanted to learn about something like the purpose of the hammerhead’s hammer? The greatest extent of the bull shark size? The real reason why great white sharks will sometimes bite humans? We founded the website SharkSider.com so that anyone can learn about all this and more.
The Truth About Shark Attacks
Shark attacks do happen, but out of the hundreds of species that exist throughout the world’s oceans and rivers, there are only three species which are known to consistently attack humans unprovoked, and even then an attack is very rare. Despite all the millions of people who swim in shark-infested waters every year, there are only around 100 reported bites each year worldwide, and of those only an average of 4 are fatal. By comparison, dog bites kill approximately ten times as many Americans alone.
The three species in question are the great white shark, the tiger shark, and the bull shark. The bull shark has some unusual traits compared to its cousins: thanks to how their bodies regulate salt, they can exist just as comfortably in freshwater as they can in the ocean, which means they often appear in large rivers and lakes which sit within 100 miles of the sea. And that’s despite how the maximum average bull shark size is 11 feet!
Bull sharks are remarkably social for sharks. Sea mammals tend to swim around in families or pods and prey fish will stick together in schools for protection, but it’s rare for sharks, especially big sharks, to see each other as anything more than competition or a possible food source. However, not only will bull sharks come together to hunt the same prey, it seems like they have some ability to coordinate. We still know next to nothing about how bull shark society works, but it seems the bigger the bull shark size, the more it dominates the rest.
The Real Ocean Killers
Not only do sharks have an oversized reputation for going after humans, the deadliest predator on the open waves isn’t a shark at all, but a far more dangerous species: humans. This fact may not be all that shocking, but what is shocking is the fact that humans kill millions of sharks every year for nothing more than their fins.
Shark fin soup is a highly regarded delicacy whose tradition began in China but has since spread to other nations. The fins only thicken the soup, and they have no flavor or nutritional value. As such, the only reason they’re popular is because they’re expensive and traditional, and yet our collective appetite for shark fins is voracious.
No species of shark is safe, either. Some are more likely to be hunted than others because they grow larger or they have larger fins, so no matter what the great white, hammerhead, or bull shark size or maturity should happen to be, a shark finning boat will catch it, cut off its fins, and then throw it back into the sea to die.
The Shark Side Of Life
SharkSider.com is about more than just cataloging the strange and wonderful properties of these predators of the deep, it’s about spreading the word about the dangers they face from overfishing and other human activities. We want to share basic information like the unusual intelligence of the mako shark, the low standards of the tiger shark diet, and the surprising limits of the bull shark size, but we also want people to know what it’s like to swim with sharks, to learn how and when they evolved, and to understand just how extensive the black market shark fin industry is.
Sharks are extraordinary creatures which play a vital role in ocean and river ecologies across the globe. With their populations shrinking, the populations of their prey species are exploding out of control and overconsuming their own food sources. We can make a difference and slow down this depopulation, but the first step is to spread awareness of the problem and the potential solutions.