Another shark attack in Australia?


Instagram 
perth now reports that another diver has been attacked by a shark. Their headline reads

WA spear fisherman jumped by angry shark off Coral Bay coast

According to their article:  A WA spear fisherman has captured the terrifying moment he was jumped by an angry reef shark off the North West coast. 

Albany teenager Brad Vale, 19, was spearfishing for mackerel with friends 4km off the coast of Coral Bay on Wednesday when the shark, estimated to be about` 1.5 metres long, began to circle him.
“I dived down and just sort of sat down at the bottom and a shark came in on me,” he said.

“He got a bit close then did a big turn at me and charged so I gave him a poke. When I poked him he just turned back and without me noticing I looked down and he was already chewing on my gut.
“I got to the surface and was going to shoot it but I didn’t even have time to do that. He sort of latched on to my stomach and I tried to hit it with my gun in my hand but he let go pretty quick.”

Wow, what a terrifying experience. Getting attacked by a shark for no reason. Let's look at the video Brad Vale shot of this incident.

 
Video source: youtube/brradz
 
Well, good thing he posted that video, because it clearly shows Brad descending and SHOOTING the shark, which cause it to turn on him!

So when Brad says that the shark turned on him and then he "poked" it, he really meant to say "I shot it and then it turned on me". As to him not having time to shoot him, when he got to the surface, well, it is a bit hard to shoot something, when you first have to reload your speargun, because you already shot at it.

The video clearly shows his loaded gun during the descent, him shooting the shark and then ascending to the surface with no shaft in the gun.

But hey, blame the shark, it makes for a much better headline. I would be angry too, if someone shot at me. Read the entire article here.

Anyway, I'm glad that Brad is OK and I hope he learned that it's not a good idea to shoot a shark.

Cheers,
Martin Graf
CEO Shark Diver
  
About Shark Diver. As a global leader in commercial shark diving and conservation initiatives Shark Diver has spent the past decade engaged for sharks around the world. Our blog highlights all aspects of both of these dynamic and shifting worlds. You can reach us directly at staff@sharkdiver.com.

I was surrounded by bull sharks!


Instagram 
I just got back from my 4th annual trip to Fiji, diving with the "BAD" (Beqa Adventure Divers') bull sharks of the Shark Reef Marine Reserve. It is an unbelievable experience to be surrounded by lots of these awesome predators.


We saw a shark or two
What really fascinates me is not the sheer number of sharks though.  The really interesting part is that I'm starting to recognize some individual sharks, not only by distinctive marks on them, but by their behavior.

Doing a lap, showing everyone that she got a tuna head.

Anyone thinking that "a bull shark is a bull shark" should come to this place and see for themselves. These sharks have very different "personalities", some very mellow and cautious, others not so much. Of course you need to do more than just one or 2 dives to notice these differences. The first few dives your are simply going to be blown away by the sheer number of sharks and and by how close they'll get to you.

Up close and personal!
Common wisdom holds that when it comes to sharks, size matters. The big shark always wins over a smaller shark. What I found is that this is not always the case. Some sharks think they are a lot bigger than they really are and compete with the bigger sharks for the tuna heads on offer. "Top Sail" for example is not one of the bigger sharks, but is very adept at getting more than her fair share of tuna heads.

Top sail getting a tuna head.
Another thing that totally surprised me is how cautious these sharks are, even when food is offered to them. Some sharks will not approach the feeder who's holding a tuna head and some sharks will only take a tuna head from a specific feeder. I would have thought that these bull sharks would pretty much go for any tuna head that is offered to them.


If all the bull sharks are not enough for you, just when you think the dive is over, there is the safety stop. Far from a boring hanging on to a line, waiting for the 3 minutes to pass, you are face to face wit a bunch of hungry white- and black-tip sharks, being fed by one of the divemasters.


I'm still very partial to "my" white sharks at Guadalupe, but I'm getting more and more taken by the bull sharks of the SRMR and can't wait for next year.

Sam face to face with a hungry white tip shark.
Thanks to all the guys at "BAD", (Beqa Adventure Divers) for your hospitality and another unforgettable trip. You are simply the best! Vinaka vakalevu!

Blacktip shark at the safety stop
In the coming weeks we'll be posting a special offer for next year's Fiji trip. My descriptions and pictures don't do these sharks justice. You'll have to come and experience them yourself.


Cheers,
Martin Graf
CEO Shark Diver


About Shark Diver. As a global leader in commercial shark diving and conservation initiatives Shark Diver has spent the past decade engaged for sharks around the world. Our blog highlights all aspects of both of these dynamic and shifting worlds. You can reach us directly at staff@sharkdiver.com.

Shark “Expert” teaches how to survive a shark attack?


Instagram 
This is getting ridiculous. "Shark Expert" and "shark whisperer" Riccardo Sturla Avogadri is showing people how to survive a shark attack. 


A article in the Daily Mail talks about Riccardo provoking a shark to attack him, in order to demonstrate how to survive an attack.  Article here.


 
 source youtube

DaShark wrote an excellent blog about him and all the other stuff he does. (you may need google translate to read some of the quotes)

http://fijisharkdiving.blogspot.com/2016/06/il-pagliaccio.html


 
source youtube

To quote DaSharkWhich brings me right back to the story at the top. Having seen this last video, do you really believe that the gioppino is demonstrating to a group of students how to act in a emergency situation with a shark by being intentionally bitten by a male shark who is protecting and showing off on the front of the bunch of female lemon sharks like asserted by the photographer, he himself another certified Shark expert and all-round genius - or is simply being nailed by a Lemon like he always does?

It seems to me that this idiot is showing people a sure fire way to get bitten by a shark and not how to survive an attack. I guess it comes down to what I always say. The fastest way to tell that someone is NOT a shark expert is that he/she's telling you he/she is.
  
Cheers,
Martin Graf
CEO Shark Diver
 
About Shark Diver. As a global leader in commercial shark diving and conservation initiatives Shark Diver has spent the past decade engaged for sharks around the world. Our blog highlights all aspects of both of these dynamic and shifting worlds. You can reach us directly at staff@sharkdiver.com.

Shark “Expert” teaches how to survive a shark attack?


Instagram 
This is getting ridiculous. "Shark Expert" and "shark whisperer" Riccardo Sturla Avogadri is showing people how to survive a shark attack. 


A article in the Daily Mail talks about Riccardo provoking a shark to attack him, in order to demonstrate how to survive an attack.  Article here.


 
 source youtube

DaShark wrote an excellent blog about him and all the other stuff he does. (you may need google translate to read some of the quotes)

http://fijisharkdiving.blogspot.com/2016/06/il-pagliaccio.html


 
source youtube

To quote DaSharkWhich brings me right back to the story at the top. Having seen this last video, do you really believe that the gioppino is demonstrating to a group of students how to act in a emergency situation with a shark by being intentionally bitten by a male shark who is protecting and showing off on the front of the bunch of female lemon sharks like asserted by the photographer, he himself another certified Shark expert and all-round genius - or is simply being nailed by a Lemon like he always does?

It seems to me that this idiot is showing people a sure fire way to get bitten by a shark and not how to survive an attack. I guess it comes down to what I always say. The fastest way to tell that someone is NOT a shark expert is that he/she's telling you he/she is.
  
Cheers,
Martin Graf
CEO Shark Diver
 
About Shark Diver. As a global leader in commercial shark diving and conservation initiatives Shark Diver has spent the past decade engaged for sharks around the world. Our blog highlights all aspects of both of these dynamic and shifting worlds. You can reach us directly at staff@sharkdiver.com.

How do you choose the right shark diving operation?


Instagram 

Shark diving has gained in popularity over the last decade or so. With the increasing number of operations that offer interactions with sharks, we have also seen a growing trend for some operators to use irresponsible and in some cases down right stupid and dangerous diving practices. 



So how can a diver find an operation that is using responsible and sustainable practices? How does he/she know if an operation is participating in conservation efforts, education and research?


Now there is a way to do exactly that. Rick McPherson, a marine biologist and conservationist has created a website, www.sustainablesharkdiving.com that is rating shark diving operations on various criteria, helping divers in choosing who to go with. It is sort of like a trip advisor for the shark diving industry. 

We at Shark Diver are proud to provide our divers with a "Safe and Sane" shark diving experience and support research and conservation through our collaboration with the Marine Conservation Science Institute. We are excited about Rick's new website and hope that anyone interested in shark diving will use it when choosing their next dive operation.

Here is the press release, announcing www.sustainablesharkdiving.com

San Francisco, CA
Sustainable Shark Dive Tourism Website Now Live: Best Practices and Trip Reviews
Sustainable Shark Diving (www.sustainablesharkdiving.com), a new website that provides tools and “Trip Advisor-like reviews of shark dive tourism operations around the world is now live. The website, previewed at the 2015 DEMA Show in Florida to overwhelming interest and support, has opened and now offers shark divers an opportunity to learn about best practices while helping to promote more sustainable environmental and safety within the industry. 

The popularity and growth of shark dive tourism over the past decade is undeniable. Divers increasingly want to see sharks and are willing to pay well to have close encounters with these charismatic species. For a critically threatened group such as sharks, this is good news. “Over 100 million sharks die each year due to interactions with fisheries, “ reports Rick MacPherson, marine biologist, conservationist, and founder of the new online tool Sustainable Shark Diving “I believe a living shark showcased for tourism over its lifetime is better than a dead shark used once for its fins and meat,” says MacPherson. “I created sustainablesharkdiving.com as a free, open access portal for tourists and dive operators to help underscore the value of healthy shark populations to tourism as well as highlight best practices and lessons learned from shark dive operations around the world.” Dr Austin Gallagher, Postdoctoral Researcher at Carleton University and principal author of a ground-breaking 2015 global study of the shark diving industry, agrees, "The value of shark diving tourism to local economies and cultures has emerged as one of the leading arguments for the conservation of sharks around the world."
The shark dive tourism industry has already taken note of the value of this new online tool. Jorge Loria, owner of Phantom Divers, a bull shark diving operation in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, believes this tool will help create a higher standard for the growing shark diving industry, “Diving with a sustainable business that is safe and educational results in a benefit to both divers and sharks because the more we know about sharks the better we can protect them.” Mike Neumann, owner of Beqa Adventure Divers in Fiji agrees: “This will be a game changer and a huge step towards propelling the shark diving industry towards a more long term sustainable model.” 

Sustainable Shark Diving fills an industry need by providing a free, one-stop source for best safety and environmental practices and guidelines that have been established around the world for the viewing of sharks (and their flat cousins the rays). “Sustainable Shark Diving offers visitors a compilation of shark diving best practices and guidelines,” explains MacPherson. “You can search by shark species or by region. Whether you want to dive with white sharks, whale sharks, oceanic whitetip, bull, nurse, or any species, you will find the most currently accepted sustainability guidelines for that type of experience.” 

Importantly, Sustainable Shark Diving features a Trip Advisor-like review section that allows divers to rate their experience with any shark dive operation against a set of sustainability criteria that includes safety, environmental performance, staff interactions, and overall educational/conservation value. "This tool has enormous potential to begin pushing the entire global industry closer to sustainability and accountability”, says Dr Gallagher. “By allowing the tourists themselves - the lifeblood of this and any tourism industry - to rank the performance, safety, and environmental ethics of operators around the world, the industry as a whole becomes more transparent and we can promote the good and hopefully phase out the bad.

ABOUT RICK MACPHERSON, FOUNDER
Rick MacPherson is a marine ecologist and conservationist with three decades of experience in solving environmental challenges. He has a particular focus and interest in the intersection of conservation and marine tourism. As a PADI certified diver for over 35 years, he has witnessed the decline of coral reefs and shark populations during his lifetime. In response, MacPherson has become a passionate advocate and thought leader on the role of sustainable tourism as a lever for ocean conservation. Achievements have included development of the world’s first standards for scuba diving, snorkeling, and boating; designer of the Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Marine Tours for the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), and founder of the Mesoamerican Reef Tourism Initiative--the longest-running sustainable tourism project in the Americas. With a belief and expertise in collaborative solutions, MacPherson has brokered partnerships across governments, corporations, NGOs, private sector, and local communities to arrive at pragmatic solutions to complex environmental problems. He is Founder and Principal of Pelagia Consulting, a San Francisco-based ocean science and conservation think tank, where he serves as senior advisor to international NGOs and charitable foundations. In 2013, MacPherson was awarded the Oris/Scuba Diving Magazine Sea Hero of the Year Award in recognition of his achievements in ocean conservation. 




CONTACT 

Rick MacPherson, Founder Sustainable Shark Diving rickmacpherson@me.com +1 (510) 295-5538

Let's go (sustainable) Shark Diving!

Cheers,
Martin Graf
CEO Shark Diver

About Shark Diver. As a global leader in commercial shark diving and conservation initiatives Shark Diver has spent the past decade engaged for sharks around the world. Our blog highlights all aspects of both of these dynamic and shifting worlds. You can reach us directly at staff@sharkdiver.com.

What’s it like to come face to face with a Great White Shark?


Instagram 

What's it like to come face to face with a Great White Shark? That is a question I get asked time and time again. With the news media portraying sharks as blood thirsty, mindless killers, just looking to eat us, most people think I have a death wish, diving with sharks. So I thought I should share what it is really like to come face to face with one of the most feared creatures on earth.


Here is a little video that shows how most people think an encounter with a shark will be like.




The reality it is more like the sharks swim by slowly, looking you straight into the eyes and showing absolutely no signs that they want to eat you.


When I first started diving with white sharks, what struck me is the fact that it is not scary at all. I'm by no means the only one that feels that way. In 15 seasons of taking divers to meet these awesome creatures, the most common reaction when coming face to face with a great white shark is just awe. Even divers who saw "Jaws" and joined us expecting a huge adrenaline rush, mostly are just blown away by the experience and don't find it the least bit scary. The scariest part of the expedition is the anticipation of that first meeting.


I remember that after about 3 trips to Guadalupe Island I started thinking "I've seen it" and didn't expect to do this for much longer. Well, at the time I didn't expect to be in the cage and have "Shredder" swim by to check me out. When he looked me straight into the eye, something happened. I realized that this huge shark is focused on me, that he was individually checking everyone out.

Shredder

Thinking back, that is when I fell in love with those sharks. Now as I always say to our divers. I love those sharks, but it is not a mutual feeling. That is perfectly OK. I love them for what they are, awesome predators, not mindless killers, but certainly no harmless pets either.


I don't feel the need to tell everyone that these sharks love me and that I can go hold onto their fins, because they accept me as one of their own. Come to think of it, I'm glad that they don't treat me as one of their own. Even though I'm not a small person, in terms of white shark size, I would be a very, very small shark. White sharks definitely are into having their personal space and don't react kindly to a smaller individual invading that space. I've seen what they do to a smaller shark that is doing this.


I've been diving with sharks for over 15 years and I'm excited every time I'm about to get into the water with them. I find them fascinating and discovered that they are generally very cautious and even shy, not the mindless killers the media makes them out to be at all. Last season I saw 3 white sharks that got scared by a towel that fell overboard and drifted down. 2 of them checked it out and got the heck out of there. One of them kept circling it, approaching it and jerking away, when the towel moved a little. He kept doing that until both he and the towel went out of sight.

I hope that I have given you an idea of what it feels like to come face to face with a great white shark. If you really want to know, there is no substitute for experiencing it for yourself and I hope you'll get that chance. It is an experience you'll never forget. When you do go out, remember that while we don't have to fear these sharks, we definitely have to respect them.


We at Shark Diver promote "Safe and Sane Shark Diving" that respects the sharks and the environment. We hope to see you on one of our expeditions to Guadalupe Island.

Let's go shark diving!

Cheers,
Martin Graf
CEO Shark Diver

About Shark Diver. As a global leader in commercial shark diving and conservation initiatives Shark Diver has spent the past decade engaged for sharks around the world. Our blog highlights all aspects of both of these dynamic and shifting worlds. You can reach us directly at staff@sharkdiver.com.
Page 1 of 5112345...102030...Last »