The first words that come to most people’s minds when they think of a shark are “predator”, “ruthless killer”, “mean, lean killing machine”, a “man-eater”. In truth, sharks attack only around 50 to 75 people worldwide each year, and only 8 to12 of the attacks are fatal. In the United States of America, more people are killed driving to and from the beach than by sharks.
In comparison, 100 million sharks are killed by humans every year, an estimate of 11,000 sharks every hour, around the clock. These numbers are only based on the reported catch numbers. It’s very likely that many more sharks are caught without being reported. All sharks face a great threat due to fishing. Without natural predation in the oceans, their greatest threat comes from the fishing lines and nets dangled from above. Shark finning accounts for most commercially caught sharks. Every day, fishermen catch sharks, pull them out of the ocean, cut off their fins and throw the still-living remains back into the ocean, where they slowly bleed to death. According to National Geographic, around 40,000,000 sharks are slaughtered in this barbaric manner every year. All this for a dish, shark fin soup, a luxurious meal, and a sign of prestige and status in the Chinese culture.
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