Imagine looking down underwater when you are swimming in the sea and you see this below you. Then imagine you are 540 miles offshore…that’s when the theme tune for ‘Jaws’ starts playing in your head…
When we capsized and went into the water I had no thought about what might be in there with us. It was only a while later after we had the liferaft sorted and I went back into the water to dive under the boat to find our water bottles that I thought we might not be alone. A question often asked about when we were at sea is ‘Did we see any sharks?’ The answer is with some relief particularly with our self-inflicted swimming episode – ‘No, we didn’t.’
I had a clear dread when I opened my eyes under the water to try and see the water bottles that I might also see an image similar to that above. On our Sea Survival course we were told that in a liferaft situation we should all ‘do our business’ whilst still in the water so we did not have to in the raft – I suspect that if I had seen a sight like that above I would have involuntarily ‘done my business’ regardless!
Fortunately, from my point of view we never saw a shark and that prompted me to look into that a little more when we were back when I’d seen occasional news snippets on ocean populations or even shark attacks on people.
When you look into the global shark population decline it is easy to see why we did not….most large shark species have declined by 90% or more and whether that is a product of over fishing, shark fin fishing, pollution or whatever – it puts into stark contrast just what a mess we are making of our home.
Check out the grpahics below for some facts and figures – beware the image of a hammerhead stripped of its fins – the horror of that is immense – and maybe have a read of the National Geographic article here that gives some ideas of what we can do to make a change.