Shark Week on the Discovery Channel (it’s really more like Shark Attack Week) is almost at an end. But that doesn’t mean we should just forget about sharks until this time next year.
I love sharks. It’s distressing to know that, in the last 25 years, many shark species have declined in population by over 90%. If something isn’t done soon, they’ll go extinct.
On average, 3.9 people a year are killed by sharks (Source). In contrast, some studies estimate humans kill over 100 million sharks a year for their fins.
At the end of this article are links with petitions and information on what you can do to help protect our oceans.
I’ve included a couple quotes from websites. It’s ironic that, while shark cartilage is touted as being a miracle drug, it’s actually full of unsafe levels of a toxic substance.
The legal limit for consumption of methyl-mercury, set by the EPA, is 0.1 microgram per kilogram of body weight. Studies have shown shark meat contains as much as 1,400 micrograms of methyl-mercury in one kilogram. A person weighing 155 lbs would therefore get 50 times the legal amount in one single portion of shark steak.Shark Savers: Quick Shark Facts
This finding leads to…
Shark fin soup is said to be an aphrodisiac, and many people consume it specifically for this supposed property, yet the Hong Kong researchers also revealed that, because of the high mercury content, eating shark fin soup could render men sterile—the opposite of the intended effect.Jaws: The Natural History of Sharks
(Threats to Sharks and Conservation)
More About Sharks
Take Action to Save Sharks
- Ocean Conservancy: Sharks – lots of information; don’t forget to sign the petition and contact your local representatives
- Shark Savers – has ways you can help save sharks and petitions
- WildAid -works to increase public awareness; sign their shark finning petition
Shark Information and Shark Fin Soup
- Discovery Channel’s Shark Week
- Shark Finning: Human Shark Cravings and the Price We Pay to Satisfy Them
- Web Links – Shark and Marine Conservation, General Shark Sites
- CNN: Shark fin soup alters an ecosystem – you should watch this corresponding video
- Oceana’s Finning: A Cruel Practice Video – on Vimeo
- Jaws: The Natural History of Sharks – Shark Biology, Shark Behaviour, Shark Evolution, Threats to Sharks and Conservation