Episode 110: Meg is not a “must see”-movie

It is summer and sharks are–once more–the monsters in the theaters. Despite that Hollywood tried to portrait a shark of the past and made it even more gigantic than the real thing was, many moviegoers will think twice–again–when entering the water despite the absurdity of the movie creation. So how can we cure this fear of sharks? Do you really need to hang out with them?

Episode 109: On the two boundaries to approach

That sharks do not just rush in and bite a person is commonly accepted, and is easily seen through their approach patterns with reference to their inner threshold. But what happens to them mentally when they are getting closer? Although we can never be sure what an animal thinks, based on how they behave we can make educated guesses. That also applies to sharks.

Episode 108: Why oceanic species consistently have a lower threshold to approach

If there is a difference between offshore, open water shark species and the more shore oriented ones, it is the lower threshold to approach unfamiliar objects. Probably responsible for it is that food out there is often scarce and should the opportunity arise to approach something potentially eatable, although unfamiliar, these sharks may hesitate less. That might even get more important should a second shark appear that may have an even lower threshold and would win over the other shark if humans were indeed eatable. So how to handle an open water shark?

Episode 107: On the shark feeding circus

They use chainmail suits, feeding sticks, and other gadgets when commercially feeding sharks, and present themselves as authorities and shark experts. Most of these operators are a joke and governmental pressure must kick in to mainstream these operations. In a time where sharks need all the help they can get, shark feeding operation could play a crucial role.

Episode 106: They fart, they burp

Gases are produced whenever food is broken down. These gases can remain in an animal’s body for longer periods of time until the amount is increased to a maximum tolerable volume. But gases can increase in volume without producing more gases but simply by ascending. That lowers the surrounding pressure and so the gas expands. A shark that hunts some fish that tries to flee by swimming into shallower water forces the shark to burp in order to release the increased gas pressure.

Episode 105: Do sharks actually have fun once in a while?

They often come across as funny but having actually fun? An idea is presented were sharks most likely had fun doing it but more often they just come across as funny, and when they do it is quite often rather hilarious.


Episode 104: Is there a difference between a shark that breaches, leaps or jumps?

Although all three words tell the same story that a shark leaves the water for a very short period of time, completely or partially, there are two major differences when doing so. A shark can either actively jump out of the water because it intends to e.g., dislodge a sharksucker or the shark rams a seal that lays on the surface and the momentum carries the shark above the water’s surface. Although it is mostly clear what happens, the motivation behind is often less so.


Episode 103: Do sharks choose to hang out with us or not?

When offering food, a shark’s intention is rather clear. But not so when food has not been previously offered at a site but sharks still mingle around divers. Could it be that a shark chooses our presence in order to keep its mind occupied? Considering that most sharks are at the top of their food chains, such a possibility is very likely. Keeping their brains sharp is a necessity to defend their position in the marine realm.


Episode 102: Do we ever learn?

Bite season is on again. That in itself would not be anything to worry about, except that we should remember that lifeguards lack the proper education when dealing with sharks and the authorities won’t take the proper precautions when it comes to their beaches. A sad reality that cost the life of another young man last week. Is the mighty tourism dollar really that important?


Episode 101: Having a pair of them truly helps

Against common believe–and that includes most shark scientists–sharks have two functional claspers. Some evidence is offered why a single functioning clasper would not make much sense.