General Question

pallen123's avatar

Are sharks as abundant as they were in WWII?

Asked by pallen123 (1511 points ) July 26th, 2011

I just read Unbroken and it features a story about a group of airmen adrift in the South Pacific on a raft being followed and attacked by sharks. I’ve read similar accounts of men attacked by sharks the moment they fall overboard in the Pacific ocean. I know certain types of fish populations have declined in the past half century. Are sharks still as abundant as they were in WWII? In other words, if you fell overboard in the middle of the South Pacific today, would you be as likely to be surrounded by man-eating sharks as you would in 1944?

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6 Answers

marinelife's avatar

“Around the world, sharks and rays are taken in fisheries ranging from small subsistence fisheries in inshore waters, to large industrialised fisheries in the open ocean. Since the 1950s, the number of sharks and rays caught around the world has greatly increased as traditional fisheries have declined, and due to increased demand for shark meat and liver oil. Since the1980s, there have been further increases in shark catches due to the demand for shark fins to make the traditional Asian delicacy, shark fin soup. The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation estimates that the global catch is over 100 million sharks and rays every year.

Around the world many shark fisheries have declined or collapsed from fishing.”

Sources

syz's avatar

Almost all shark species have suffered precipitous declines.

bea2345's avatar

This is a step in the right direction.

Hibernate's avatar

Contrary to popular belief, only a few sharks are dangerous to humans but only a few know about this.

GladysMensch's avatar

You must remember that the soldiers of the U.S.S. Indianapolis didn’t simply fall overboard; their ship was destroyed in a battle. There were hundreds of corpses and untold gallons of blood in the water. Sharks in the area were drawn to the sound of the battle and the blood in the water.

Pazza's avatar

There’s a lot more of them now.
Only their suits are more expensive due to inflation, erm, I mean quantative easing…..

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