Are dolphins more dangerous than sharks

The shark and the human

The shark - a dangerous killer machine Edit source]

In the media such as newspapers, news, series and films, the shark is always portrayed as a voracious beast, which is why we humans are terribly afraid of this "beast". The main cause of our great fear is probably the famous Hollywood blockbuster "Jaws". Who does not know this film in which the shark is portrayed as a cruel and aggressive killing machine. But why does the shark have such a bad reputation? Is he really as dangerous and aggressive as people always say?

No animal in the world has such a bad reputation as the shark. Humans have always viewed the shark as an enemy. People fear the "most dangerous predator on earth" which it is referred to as. Most feared is the "murderous" great white shark. From our point of view, sharks are brutal, aggressive, merciless, man-eating killer machines. The shark is considered a terrible murderer, born to kill, a perfect killer. We humans also think that sharks are extremely stupid. And it is said that at the sight (and smell) of blood sharks immediately fall into a blood frenzy / feeding frenzy, in which they bite like mad at anything that comes in front of their mouth. Women are even warned against going into the ocean on their period, as blood, especially human blood, is believed to attract sharks. People are very scared of going into the sea. We are now speaking clearly about these prejudices!

The fact is: sharks are neither aggressive nor dangerous. They are simply very curious, which is why these so-called "shark attacks" usually only occur through pure curiosity. It is not lower instincts that tempt the shark to attack humans, mostly curiosity, provocation / threat from humans or confusion are the cause of shark attacks on humans. Sharks are very clever animals in fact. You learn through observation and exploration. Also know

Sharks don't have a bloodlust. Sharks are not hungry killing machines that bite into anything that even remotely looks edible. They prefer to eat old, sick and weak animals. Sharks don't need a lot of food, they only eat every few days. And sharks don't eat humans either, simply for the reason that humans aren't natural prey for animals. That is why the shark is not an ogre. One thing is certain: Sharks know neither the taste nor the smell of humans or human blood, which is why they do not find either tasty and are therefore not attracted by them. The shark has lived in the sea for millions of years, but not humans. And that's exactly why the shark can't even know what a person is, how are they supposed to get the idea to eat them? The chance of being attacked by a shark is very low. Sharks are even more likely to fear people or be completely disinterested in them. But there are also many sharks that are very curious. Because sharks are usually very curious animals. In addition, sharks are also very adorable, graceful and majestic. Sharks are not monsters to be afraid of. They are fascinating animals that have lived on our earth for millions of years. Sharks are extremely important to the entire marine ecosystem, they control and influence a large part of the marine population. A large part of the animal population is native to the sea. Most animals live in the sea. In addition, our earth consists largely of water. When the sharks are gone, an important link in our ecosystem will be missing. We know that predators are important in keeping the herbivore population balanced. They prevent overpopulation. Take zebras, for example. Zebras are herbivores, they belong to the preferred prey of lions, a lion is a predator or in other words a carnivore. If there were no lions, the zebra population would increase uncontrollably. The many zebras would eat all of that food until nothing was left for them, starving and eventually dying. So we now know that predators are important, as are herbivores. And not only is the lion an important animal in the food chain, sharks are also important. But we humans know almost nothing about them. But instead of trying to understand and research them, we mercilessly exterminate them. Millions of sharks die every day, thanks to humans, e.g. through sharkfinning. Their fins are cut off while they are still alive and they are thrown back into the sea, where they rot miserably. Sharks are hardly protected in the world, which is why they are now threatened with extinction. And for those who are still not convinced that the sharks are not the bad guys: There are even some people who have swam with sharks before and survived without a scratch. However, the public sees the shark as a murderous and ugly beast. In truth, he is a particularly elegant, even fascinatingly beautiful appearance that pleases the eye of the recreational diver. Perfect harmony of shape is paired here with concentrated power. However, people love horror stories - and once one has established itself, it is difficult to eradicate. That is why bloodthirsty stories about sharks will continue to be spread in newspapers and books, whether they are true or not. The truth is, it is amazing how few accidents sharks cause - when you consider how many millions of people cavort every year along coasts where there are plenty of sharks. But why are there attacks on people again and again, even if only rarely, despite their harmlessness?

The pointed shark fin [edit | Edit source]

You always see a shark fin in horror films about sharks. This typical, pointed dorsal fin that protrudes out of the water and announces a shark does not exist in real life. Rarely does a shark swim so far to the surface that you can see its dorsal fin. Most of them are dolphins with their dorsal fin sticking out of the water. The two largest species of shark, the whale shark and the basking shark, which can grow up to 18 meters long, are the most harmless. Whale sharks swim just below the surface so that their large dorsal fin protrudes over the water. The other sharks rarely see their dorsal fin, because they swim in the depths. The often described "black triangle above the waves" is usually the fin of a dolphin, a swordfish or a tuna.

Attacks on people Edit source]

The reason for these "shark attacks" is usually the so-called Test or trial bite. It works like this: If a shark discovers an animal or object that is similar to its preferred prey or is unknown to it, the test bite is carried out first. The shark bites slightly, never particularly hard, to see what exactly it is facing. Because a shark doesn't want to bother unnecessarily for prey that isn't prey at all. Often the test bite is also used to weaken the prey prematurely. Sharks also learn through observation and exploration. Which is why sharks are very curious animals. Most of the hoes have never seen a human. Therefore, sharks don't even know what a human is. And that's exactly why they're trying to find out what we are. And this works via the test bite. These sample bites come from curiosity and not from aggression. The fact that most people survive a test bite ("shark attack") unscathed, apart from a few scratches, shows how harmless sharks are and that these test bites or "shark attacks" are never caused by aggression. This is especially noticeable in that the sharks immediately, frightened, let go of their human victims as soon as they notice their mistake. Because if sharks wanted to, they could easily do anything they want to a human being. But they don't do it because they are not aggressive, brutal, dangerous, morose or hungry for people. Sharks are simply very curious.

confusion[Edit | Edit source]

Mix-ups can also be a reason for a shark attack. The shark mistakenly confuses humans with prey. Example: A surfer lies on his board and paddles out into the sea. The shark swims a little further below him. He does not recognize this something on the surface of the water and thinks it is prey. Then, out of curiosity, the shark swims up in the hope of hitting prey like a seal. As a test he takes a bite, but never particularly hard, so that you can tell from the taste what he has in front of him. Then he notices that it is not a seal or something similar and immediately swims away frightened.

Attract [Edit | Edit source]

It used to be said that when you meet a shark in the sea: hit the water with the flat of your hand, scream in the water or move around a lot to scare away the shark. This is all nonsense, it doesn't scare away sharks, it attracts them instead. Noises spread much better in water than smells or other signals. Unruly fidgeting on the surface signals an injured prey to the shark, so you can achieve the exact opposite of scare away by hitting the water with the flat of your hand, instead you make sure that the shark swims at it. One should not forget: sharks react to sounds. So you shouldn't shout and fidget hectically.The best thing to do is to stay calm and relaxed when a shark is nearby: If a person stays calm, the shark stays calm. It is not right

Human provocation, cage diving[Edit | Edit source]

It is often said that if you hit a shark on the nose, it can be scared away. That's nonsense! Whoever hits or kicks at a shark only provokes an attack. Or, for example, if a diver chases a shark a little too vigorously (e.g. to take a photo), this could definitely provoke the shark. The shark will first try to intimidate the pursuer with threatening gestures and to scare them away, if that does not work, an attack can occur. What has become very popular with us humans is the so-called "cage diving". A shark with food is logged to the boat. There is a cage on the boat in which tourists can see the "brutal monsters" up close. To give the spectators in the cage a little kick, because a calm shark would be boring, the shark is mostly, not always, provoked with extra bait so that people don't forget the image of the "aggressive, morose shark".

My territory - your territory[Edit | Edit source]

Territorial defense can also be a reason for an attack. However, in rather rare cases, another reason for shark attacks on humans could be the animals' territorial defense. To date, however, it has not been proven whether sharks claim territories for themselves at all. However, some scientists believe that sharks - like many other animals - occupy a certain territory at least for some time (although a distinction must be made here from species to species). If a person penetrates the territory, the shark may consider the person to be a danger or a competitor and attack them as a result. However, sharks don't actually attack immediately. First they try to drive away the intruder with threatening gestures (e.g. this was observed with the gray reef shark) and only when these gestures do not have the desired effect do sharks attack.

Attacks on people in comparison Edit source]

There are around 80 shark attacks worldwide every year. If you consider how many millions of people bathe in the sea every day, in the areas where the sharks also live, that is a very small number in comparison. These attacks also include the fact that the shark simply stays near people without doing anything, which significantly reduces the number of actual attacks. Most attacks are either provoked by humans or are so-called "test bites". Every year around 10 people die from these shark attacks (you can find more information here), 50 people from elephants, 150 people from falling coconuts, 70 people from box jellyfish, 500 people from plane crashes, 60,000 from rabies, 656,000 from Mallaria and from Traffic accidents die annually 14,000,000. People.

What to do if a shark comes too close? Edit source]

The most important thing is never to hit or kick the shark and always stay calm. Don't touch the shark, don't scream, don't hit, don't kick, don't fidget, don't hit the water, just stay calm :). No hectic movements and not just jerkily to flee. It is best to keep an eye on the shark. As soon as the opportunity arises, swim away slowly and in control. If the shark comes too close, simply push / push water into its gills and then it turns away. Source: Galileo, Sharkproject, Scienceblogs, Erich Ritter

Conclusion [edit | Edit source]

The shark is actually a completely harmless predator. There are no dangerous or aggressive sharks, only dangerous situation. If you behave properly, these animals are just curious. The chances of being attacked by a shark are low. If a shark wanted to, it could tear a person to shreds in just a few seconds, but it won't. Because sharks are not aggressive or hungry for people. Sharks are just very curious.

The shark's worst enemy Edit source]

Thanks to humans, the sharks are on the verge of extinction, they are now on the verge of extinction. In Asia, shark fin soup is a delicacy, it tastes like nothing, but is said to have healing powers and protect against diseases. Because sharks supposedly can't get sick. But that's not true, sharks can also get cancer, for example. In addition, the flesh of the sharks is full of mercury. The sharks are caught for the shark fin soup. Usually the shark is pulled to the boat with a hook and often even paced until it dies.

But it is also often fished with nets or so-called longlines, in which sharks and other marine animals become entangled in masses, which then suffocate and die. Huge nets are also stretched in front of beaches to "protect" the people on the beach from the sharks. Sharks get caught in these nets and die in agony.

The fins of the captured sharks are then cut off while they are still alive. Then the rest of the shark's body is simply thrown back into the more, where it dies in agony. The whole thing is called "Sharkfining". The shark's fins are worth several thousand dollars. The main problem is that sharks are hardly protected, which is why they are hunted almost everywhere in the world. As a result of sharkfining, the shark population has decreased significantly.

Every year around 200 million sharks die, which means that many shark species are now critically endangered. No other wild animal is currently slaughtered so brutally and in such large quantities. None of this is used for meat production, it is just a leisure activity. Often the shark's teeth are proudly worn around the neck as a trophy after a successful fight. Shark cartilage is also touted as an alleged miracle weapon. They are called "Haifit" or "Haitin". Its healing effect has not yet been proven. Nevertheless, the supposed miracle cure has cost countless sharks their lives. The most important shark cartilage supplier in Costa Rica processes 200 sharks every day. That means: killed, cartilage removed and the rest of the shark body disposed of as waste. Shark ingredients also end up in anti-wrinkle creams or in alleged sexual enhancers that are sold worldwide, but also end up on the European market.

Without sharks, the sea dies Edit source]

Experts fear that without sharks there would be an ecological collapse in the oceans. A reef without sharks dies within a year. This shows what a vital function these animals fulfill in the vulnerable marine ecosystem. So much the worse that a third of the 460 or so shark species are currently endangered. Well over 100 million sharks are killed annually worldwide. That's around 250,000 every day and three to six every second. The intelligent marine animals with their highly developed senses play an enormously important role in the marine ecosystem. Very few people know what vital role the shark actually has in the marine ecosystem. Sharks are the "regulators" in the sea. Sharks have been at the top of the food pyramid for over 400 million years. Depending on the species, they eat sick animals or smaller predatory fish and thus ensure a functioning ecology in the sea. Sharks are so-called cartilaginous fish. They reproduce very slowly. About 20% of the sharks lay eggs, 80% give birth while alive. Sharks only have between 2 and 100 young. No comparison to the millions of eggs of the "bony fish". If the shark population is reduced even further, there is hardly any possibility of redressing this imbalance. As a result, the sharks will no longer be able to keep the ecosystem stable and in balance. Scientific studies show that a coral reef that kills all sharks dies within a year.Many marine zones are already considered ecologically dead areas. In view of the current oil spill in the US, more areas will be added. While all these things happen in secret, under water, a rethinking process must finally take place in public. Something must visibly happen! And despite all the warnings, the killing of the sharks continues unhindered.

Propaganda and Reality Edit source]

To return to the statistics: 10 people die each year as a result of a shark attack, 50 as a result of a hippopotamus attack. Every year 150 people die from falling coconuts, 2000 from plane crashes. 40,000 people die from snake bites, 410,000 from drowning, 1,200,000 from traffic accidents, 2,100,000 from malaria and 5,000,000 people die from smoking, as opposed to the 200,000,000 sharks we kill each year. That's about 550,000 sharks a day. 22,800 per hour. 380 animals per minute. To ask? For every human being killed by a shark, there are 20,000,000 human-killed sharks.

More info [edit | Edit source]

Shark protector and researcher: Dr. Erich Ritter [edit | Edit source]