Hank began Shark Week celebrations early this year, when he ventured out to the birthday party of a favorite 8-year-old and came back scarred. Bouncy castle, check. Cotton candy machine, check. Face painting, check. One small, deadly Chihuahua. Check?
But. And. Oh, my. A partygoer came in with a flying great white shark. Flying. Yes. “Flying” is a word that should never, ever, be paired with “great white shark”. As it should never, ever be paired with “spider”. But there it was. Great white shark. Flying. There.
You will note that the following photos are fuzzy because the shark was swimming towards Hank. In the air.
Good thing Hank doesn’t wear knickers.
Speaking of knickers, many of you know that Hank’s VFP has a pretty advanced case of the sharks, despite years of sharing deep water with the bad boys, ka mano o Hawai`i and all points out. Blame it squarely on the summer of 1975, `cause that’s when it all started.
Just for fun, she consulted Pew, Oceana, the IUCN, and others and put together a tiny list of some of the sharks she’s definitely been in the water with and seen (average species size in italics) as well as the sharks she’s likely been in the water with and didn’t see. Holy moly:
OH, MY YES: Nurse sharks (14.11 feet), tiger sharks (24.61), scalloped hammerheads (14.11), blacktips (7-8), reef blacktips (4), reef whitetips (3) Galápagos sharks (10-12), sandbar sharks (5-6), gray reef sharks (5 ), and lotsa lemon sharks (8-10). Plus, dogfish. Lotsa dogfish.
MOST LIKELY: Great hammerheads (20.01), bull sharks (11), basking sharks (29.53), blue sharks (13.12), great white sharks (25.98), oceanic whitetips (12.99), and bonnetheads (3-5).
SOMEDAY? Megamouth (23.26), goblin sharks (20.24), Greenland sharks (23.95), and the mighty WHALE shark (65.62).
And how about those marvelous bluntnose sixgills (15.81 feet) in our local Puget Sound depths? Here are some lovely photos if you’ve not seen these ancient creatures: http://www.raptureofthedeep.net/sixgill/h3F4B936A#h5e591e7
Just for fun you could try this too! Think about all the areas in the world you’ve been swimming, diving, or surfing. They add up. Now, speaking of Mexico…
Here’s a lovely video of another of Hank’s VFPs off Guadeloupe Island recently with some very big white fellows…(look very quickly to the right of the screen at the beginning of this clip for Hank’s VFP. He’s in cargo shorts, blue ball cap and white long sleeve tee-shirt. Can you see him? He is Hank’s uncle. He is your buddy.)
Well, there you go. You’re gonna need a bigger boat.
Speaking of bigger boats, Hank hopes you’ll hop aboard and join him as a sailor and citizen of TerraMar and help him promote responsibility for our shared high seas. International waters cover 45% of the planet, after all, and that means a lot of critters and habitat that need our support! Get your passport here: http://theterramarproject.org/
Well, mateys, Hank leaves you with this handy-dandy graphic that he likes because it’s all colorful and provides food for thought during Shark Week. Ahoy, aloha, and be careful out there:
…Happy Shark Week!
A smile is the chosen vehicle of all ambiguities.