Shark finning is very gruesome thing.
If you will see it you will be deeply disturbed and sad. Sharks, big and small are dragged on board a fishing vessel, their fins are chopped off while they are alive, and then they are dumped overboard to die in agony. There is no shred of mercy in fishermen’s mind. Just check the internet and you will see it by your own eyes!
Shark fins are used in some oriental cuisine. It is based on believe in a mythical power the shark fin soup has. This myth has no scientific substantiation and purely based on perception. In ancient times to catch strong and powerful predator was a serious challenge – just imagine catching a lion with a wooden stick. Over time this created such culinary glory to dishes made from the shark fins and there was no damage to the environment so few sharks was caught.
Today, fishing methods technologically evolved. Many places have become overfished and the ocean’s population is declining at a disastrous rate. Now, what was available to an exclusive part of people, become available to everybody. Today anyone can taste shark fin soup which was a privilege of very wealthy people not too long time ago.
Sharks are disappearing. If they all disappear, the order of life in oceans will be disrupted catastrophically. It will take very long time to ocean to stabilize and it will never be the same. Just contemplate the disappearance of the Great White Sharks – perception the Great White Sharks by majority of people on the planet is formed by the infamous horror movie “Jaws” and is far from reality as it can be. The Great White Sharks are feeding on seals. Their existence keeps seal population fit, healthy and limited. Seals prey on large fish, in the most cases that fish is a predator and weaker, ill fish is preyed upon, therefore these fish populations are being controlled. And this food chain influences algae level and corals. As you see, our environment and ocean life is a large system where all layers are interdependent. Disappearance of any of them will destruct this system potentially in a disastrous way. I’m confident, none of us wants this!
There is another reason I’m starting this petition. I’m diving with sharks. I observing them and taking videos often from a very close distance. My life changing experience was diving with Great White Sharks. I have spent many hours underwater, up to my waist out of a cage and filming them in a few inches away from their teeth. The shark has many opportunities to get me – never happened. For these hours my fellow divers and I did not notice a slightest sign of aggression. The Great White Shark was there out of curiosity and was entertaining himself. I have realized sharks have intelligence, they can be bored, they want to explore – they are, actually, have personality! You may watch our videos about sharks on YouTube: http://youtu.be/6N59ukLpf0k , http://youtu.be/FX98tzv4WZA , http://youtu.be/Pap0LR0-INk , http://youtu.be/1q8rxk5fG24 as visual evidence so you what I’m talking about.
After that, my perception of the whole world around me changed – it is not for my consumption – we are part of this world as well all of them – animals, insects, plants, etc. And all these creatures deserve to be respected as we respect other humans.
Shark finning is big business and big money is involved. Our country is not the biggest consumer of fins but we still stimulate this inhumane business. The only way to save our sharks is to ban sale and distribution of the shark fins and products containing shark fins. Let’s have mercy on sharks, let’s respect them as we respect our own little brothers – dogs and cats, let’s be humane – it will make us better people and world around us better too!
Oleg Finodeyev, SCUBA Film Factory
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