Sharks in Egypt

There are several species of sharks in the Red Sea – the largest saltwater body adjoining the country of Egypt. While attacks are rare, there have been instances where sharks have attacked humans, most notably the Sharm El Sheikh shark attacks that took place in 2010.

However, humans are not the sharks’ intended prey. The creatures have started swimming closer to shore due to dwindling amounts of food thanks to overfishing. Also, unscrupulous dive operators will bait sharks for tourists causing the sharks to assume the divers as a source of food for short periods, leading to attacks.

List of the Different Types of Sharks in Egypt

Species Maximum Size Aggressiveness
Blacktip Reef Shark 3-4 feet Moderately aggressive (if provoked)
Bull Shark 7-12 feet Highly aggressive
Gray Reef Shark 4-5 feet Highly aggressive
Oceanic Whitetip Shark 10-13 feet Highly Aggressive
Sand Tiger Shark 7-10 feet Not aggressive (due to their small mouths)
Scalloped Hammerhead 9-12 feet Moderately aggressive
Silky Shark 7-10 feet Highly aggressive
Silvertip Shark 6.6-9.8 feet Moderately aggressive
Shortfin Mako Shark 6.5-9.5 feet Highly aggressive
Tiger Shark 10-14 feet Highly aggressive
Whale Shark 18-32 feet Not aggressive
Whitetip Reef Shark 3-5.5 feet Moderately aggressive (only when provoked)
Zebra Shark 8.2-11 feet Not aggressive

FAQs

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On 1st December 2010, three Russians and a Ukrainian were attacked by a shark near the Sharm El Sheikh resort believed to be a shortfin mako. On 5th December of the same year, a German woman was attacked at the same resort by either a similar mako shark or an oceanic whitetip shark who later succumbed to her injuries. While shark attacks are rare in Egypt, there are several possible reasons for the attacks to take place. One potential reason may have been overfishing, causing the sharks to venture closer to shore for food. Another reason given was the dumping of sheep carcasses after the celebration of Eid on 16th November, the blood from which may have attracted sharks to the area.

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Yes, there are places in Egypt where you can dive with sharks.

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