As we continue to celebrate sharks this month, I’m reminiscing about my shark experiences. SharkWeek is about to start, so I’m going to blog about sharks this week, maybe even through the end of July! Craziness, lol, 😅😏
July 2016, Bahamas 🇧🇸
My first 40 foot dive, with loads of 9-10 foot long Caribbean Reef Sharks, Carcharhinus perezii
Conservation Status: Near Threatened, Populations are decreasing.
Ha! Scuba hair don’t care! 🤣
These species of sharks live in these warmer waters of the Caribbean and off the shores of South America, and so are often involved in these Shark Dive Experiences. At least, they are seen better alive than dead by the local Bahamians because they support the local economy.
The Caribbean Reef sharks came very close, as the top photo shows because there was no making the camera get a closer shot! Also this diver in a chain mail suit dives often enough that he recognizes individual sharks. Many of these dive operations try to practice tonic immobility (more on this later, but loosely described as calming the shark into a nearly nonreactive state) to impress tourists and draw more of us to their business.
There are also a few of these guys hanging around…Shark suckers! Also known as Remoras to many of us that watch shark television shows, and Remora remora is their scientific Latin name. These fish are common in the warmer regions of all the oceans and not only stick close to sharks, but to many large bony fish, sea turtles, and marine mammals.
Not only do these remoras eat scraps of food that these sharks and other animals prey upon, but help out their host by eating the ectoparasites found on their bodies! That’s helpful!
Interestingly, some cultures like the ancient Greeks and Romans thought these fish had magical powers to sadly cause abortions if the young lady held the fish tight enough or even to show down someone’s shipping vessels to allow their enemy to catch them. The name remora means in the Latin, to hold back. Well, we know today that this is not the case thankfully!
Another magical attribute to these fish are found in the Harry Potter Universe! The Ramora (with an A not an E) is found only in the Indian Ocean and can anchor ships. Hm, maybe the ancient Romans weren’t so far off. These Ramora are also guardians of these seafarers, and have been protected from wizard poachers by the International Confederation of Wizards.
Lol! See, clearly scuba doesn’t care how crazy it looks 😂 It was a great experience, and I hope people continue to see value in these animals. Without sharks in the ecosystem, we could see everything else unravel.
I hope everyone enjoys watching Shark Week and comes to have a deeper love and understanding for sharks to be our ocean ecosystems. I hope more people are inspired to want to do more to help the sharks survive as well as keep our oceans healthier and cleaner, for all of us to enjoy.
I want to give a shout out of many thanks to the Blackall’s and Ocean Daughters Conservation Alliance for a fintastic trip! Looking forward to doing more and getting more awareness out into the world to keep our oceans beautiful.
Love this site, so definitely check it out. Especially during Shark Week…
About the remoras: animaldiversity.org/accounts/Remora_remora
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, JKRowling