When people hear the word "Shark," they think of a big ocean animal with sharp teeth and terrific hunting skills. But, did you know that there's a species of shark that's only 6 inches long? Yes, the Etmopterus perryi, commonly called the "dwarf lantern shark," is the smallest of the shark species, and its size is usually about 6 to 8 inches long.
Out of more than 500 shark species known, the Rhincodon typus, emerges as the biggest shark species, measuring up to 65 feet in length, and is called the whale shark.
Sharks are carnivorous animals and are known to be the top predators of the sea; they feed on other fish and mammals found in the sea, like dolphins and seals, and they also hunt other sharks for food.
Sharks might appear as frightening predators, but contrary to popular belief, only a few shark species are dangerous to man, specifically only about 10. Sharks take the top place in the food chain of the marine ecosystem, and their presence is vital to maintaining the balance of a healthy marine ecosystem.
Although sharks have existed for millions of years, today, the shark population faces threats to its survival, and the majority of these threats are from humans.
Threats that Endanger Shark Species
The following are major threats to the survival of the shark population.
This happens when sharks are accidentally caught in fishing nets, and this causes the deaths of millions of sharks annually.
Overfishing of certain shark species has gradually affected their population, and they are now considered endangered.
● Shark finning
Some people hunt sharks to harvest their fins for commercial purposes, and they do this by removing only the fins of the shark while throwing the rest of the shark into the sea. The cruelty of the process of shark finning and its effect on shark conservation make it an unacceptable practice.
● Hunting for meat
Other times, humans hunt sharks to get their meat for commercial purposes.
According to the IUCN, in the evaluation of over 60 species of sharks and rays, 34% were considered vulnerable, endangered, or critically endangered. While the evaluation of many more species has yet to be done, we know that the shark population needs our help, and we need to know what we can do to save them and, ultimately, the marine ecosystem.
Adopt a Shark Campaign
Adopt a Shark Campaign by Marine Life Mission is a way to contribute to saving vulnerable and endangered sharks.
When you adopt a shark, a percentage of the profit goes to funding research and projects to better know sharks and develop better strategies to conserve them.
In addition, these funds help to influence laws on shark conservation, treat injured sharks and promote awareness of sharks' preservation.
Although some shark species have thriving populations, a number of them are vulnerable and endangered. Your support can go a long way towards fighting threats to the survival of sharks. Join the mission today.