What is the most dreaded word you could hear when having a nice beach day with your friends and family? That one’s easy- "SHARRRRRK!" Hearing this would probably cause everyone to come stampeding out of the water in a panic. The most ironic part? We, as humans, are MUCH more dangerous to sharks than they are to us. They are probably swimming away from the shore thinking "HUMANNNNS!"
Since humans began recording shark attacks in 1580, there have been less than 500 fatal attacks in almost five centuries. How many sharks have been killed by humans? This record does not date back to 1580, however scientists predict that about 100 million sharks are killed EACH YEAR. So why are we so afraid of them? It is probably due to their killing machine reputations given to them by the media and movies like Jaws (I think we all have heard the Jaws melody in our heads once or twice when swimming in open water). So besides the fact that most of us are afraid of them, why do humans kill so many sharks? The answer: Soups, cosmetics, souvenirs, and phony health pills. It seems quite inhumane when simplified to what we’re killing this innocent creature for, doesn’t it?
Sharks are very important to our eco-system. They have been balancing out the life cycles of our reefs for millions of years, and by depleting their populations we are hurting our oceans. Sharks are the oldest living vertebrates known to man, which means that studying them can teach us so much about the evolution of life on this planet. So, how can you help?
Start teaching your children about shark conservation (after all, they are the future) by informing them about sharks and how important they are to our earth. Our Wild Safari® Sea Life Collection has 8 different species of sharks, all of which have facts about the shark included on our website. On a smaller scale, our Sharks Toob® and Prehistoric Sharks Toob® each have 10 different species of sharks in them, great for playing trivia games!
Have you started to teach your children about the conservation of sharks and different animals? What techniques do you use? Share with us in the comment box below!