Fascinating up-close footage of silvertip reef sharks
The Pacific Ocean is home to some of the most fascinating and diverse life in all of the world's waters. One of those creatures is the silvertip reef shark. Sleek and powerful, and armed with a formidable set of razor sharp teeth, it is easy to see why these beasts are feared by so many.
The truth about sharks is that they play a vital role in our oceans and the delicate ecosystems within. They are top predators and they are responsible for managing the populations of animals that, without them, would overpopulate and decimate the reefs.
Agile and swift, sharks patrol the waters, always looking for an opportunity to capture a meal. Their keen senses and highly evolved organs allow them to smell blood for miles and to detect abnormalities in how an animal moves. They can sense agitation, and even an increased heart rate. In essence, they can smell fear. This allows them to target prey that are not as likely to escape. Wounded or struggling fish are quickly attacked.
But despite their fearsome reputation, shark attacks on humans are extremely rare. Unprovoked attacks are even more rare. In almost all cases of bites, improper behavior on the part of the human was a large factor.
These divers are on a shark dive in Papua New Guinea, in Kimbe Bay. Part of an ecological tour, their purpose was to record video and capture images of the sharks in their natural habitat. Studying these sharks provides us with answers to questions about their habits and leads to a better understanding of how we can help them survive. But entering their world means that we must respect them and not forget that we are guests in their domain.
Tourism provides a much needed source of income for many people who live where the sharks do. This industry creates a scenario where the sharks are worth far more alive than dead. Conservation and protection means profit for all. Most reputable dive operations actually contribute to local economies and conservation efforts, greatly impacting the overall health of the oceans.
This dive excursion took place on board the MV FeBrina from Walindi Resort in Kimbe Bay, Papua New Guinea. The operators are well known for quietly contributing to local schools, villages, and environmental projects. When selecting a dive holiday, benevolent and responsible operators such as these are the best choice for many reasons.