Cinematic masterpieces, and sensationalized media reports have painted sharks as blood-thirsty monsters lurking in the shadowy depths of the oceans just waiting to strike. Our collective imagination is to blame for the vicious killer typecast that sharks now possess. In truth, you are far more likely to be killed by a bee sting, lightning strike, and even a falling coconut than a shark bite. Despite the Hollywood cliché, humans are simply not part of a shark’s menu.
Factors like bycatch, long lines, finning, overfishing, discarded nets, marine debris, and stigma are devastating our shark populations. It is estimated that over 73,000,000 sharks will be slaughtered this year. That is a staggering rate of over 11,000 animals dead each and every hour. The reality is that if these apex predators become extinct, our oceans die with them.
Sharks possess a widespread global distribution and play a crucial role in maintaining the health of our oceans. Sharks serve as keystone! They keep prey from over-grazing vital habitats and from becoming too prevalent. Without sharks, the delicate balance of the food chain collapses. This breakdown propels other species into extinction. Removing sharks from our oceans not only tampers with a significant source of the globe’s protein supply, but also jeopardizes primary employment for millions. Did you know that the ocean produces more oxygen than all of the rainforests combined and also helps to regulate our planet’s weather?
The reality is that survival of mankind is intricately weaved into the survival of sharks. Here at Ocean’s Daughter Conservation Alliance, we firmly believe that every person can make a difference. Small everyday actions can lead to big whale changes! That is why we proudly support shark conservation and spearhead positive messaging to help remove the myths and stigma surrounding sharks. We work on both social media platforms and routinely host community outreach programs to educate people of all ages on the vulnerability and value of sharks!
Staying true to our core concept of an alliance, we also collaborate closely with shark labs around the world and support research projects aimed at preserving shark species. As an organization, we are actively working towards placing acoustic tags on tiger sharks in Bimini waters, and also seeking to build and place new receiver stations in the water to help scientists track and monitor shark migration patterns. Our research goals also extend to unlocking the secrets of tiger shark breeding grounds, and analyzing hereditary lines through state-of-the-art genetic sampling.
We have also partnered with the #keepfinalive movement and proudly serve as United States ambassadors. This campaign revolves around a plush shark by the name of Fin. His mission is to spread awareness of the catastrophic decline in shark populations due to overfishing and finning. We have taken Fin to local schools, zoos, and aquariums where he happily poses for selfies with children and adults. The theme is “I hugged a shark and I liked it”. Fin recently made an appearance on a local television show with #sharkweekmermaid!
In honor of Shark Week, Ocean’s Daughter Conservation Alliance will be hosting a shark week themed party at the Coppertail Brewing Company in Tampa, Florida. The event is scheduled to take place on July 1st, from 7:00 until 10:00. Tickets are only $25 and include dinner and drinks. There will be a live mermaid cove, a blue carpet entry, a selfie station with Fin, raffles, a conservation themed auction, and a shark presentation highlighting our work. For those who are not able to attend, we are selling symbolic shark adoption kits through the end of Shark Week. Those are available for $35 and include a photo of one of our tagged tiger sharks, a reusable shark tote, an adoption certificate, a shark infographic, and a shark education piece. 100% of those proceeds go directly into shark conservation efforts! Both can be purchased at oceansdaughteronservation.com or our Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/17189868617