The great white shark is a majestic and terrifying animal, as you may have seen in videos, but it has also been mercilessly hunted by heartless creeps who hate nature. The great white is more than a sea monster, of course: It is a crucial part of the ocean environment, acting as the grim reaper for sad and sickly sea critters who would otherwise require entitlements to live out their old age.
As of February, the majestic killing machine of the deep is protected by California's Endangered Species Act. Sports fishing of the sharks has been illegal since 1994, but a lot of juvenile great whites get caught [...]
"A new study into the diets of Gulf tiger sharks found the scavengers are not only feeding on marine animals but also land-based birds, including woodpeckers, swallows, tanagers, meadowlarks and others. 'We were not expecting to see this. It certainly prompts a series of questions, the most obvious being "How does a land bird end up in the water as food for sharks?"' said lead researcher Marcus Drymon of the Dauphin Island Sea Lab in Alabama." —And then the scary music started.
Image by Andrea Danti, via Shutterstock
Our favorite shark attack survivor, Paul De Gelder, a Sydney-based Navy diver (just now back to work, a year-and-a-half after his attack!), and nine other shark attack survivors are lobbying the UN for shark protection. Sharks! Why do we keep savagely and randomly attacking them on our beaches?
There's nothing quite so wonderful as an alarmist science scandal-you know, the kind of thing that sounds really really bad but you don't really know why? And we get a lot of that, because sometimes the wonderful people at National Geographic are basically the TMZ of science and animals. Because: Sharks Carrying Drug-Resistant "Bacterial Monsters! SHARKS! Monsters! The coming plague! Sharks carrying monsters in their little fins! Or, um, sharks are making a heady brew in their stomachs of drug-resistant thingies! "Though sharks aren't a staple in the human diet, we eat what they eat-crab, shrimp, and other fish. So people should be aware of these risks and handle [...]
Blah blah blah sharks swim closer to the coast than we thought, etc. Here's my deal: It is 2009. Why is Jaws still our go-to pop culture reference for anything Selachimorphic? Shouldn't we have something better by now? Possibly with CGI? And Viggo Mortensen? VERY DISAPPOINTED.
Sharks: they're just like us, if we're killers: "Great white sharks and serial killers such as the Yorkshire Ripper stalk their victims in a similar way, scientists have found. Using methods pioneered by criminologists, researchers have discovered that the world's largest predatory fish targets prey in a highly focused way linked to the areas it knows best. The scientists adapted geographic profiling, a mathematical technique used to track down serial killers and rapists, to investigate the hunting habits of great whites." OMG, I can't wait for PETA's campaign urging people to refer to sharks as "sea rapists"!