Mainstream media usually like to depict great white sharks as ravenous monsters that cold-bloodedly kill their prey just for funsies. And not only cute baby seals, but also humans. Just because they’re so evil and stuff. And while nobody can deny that indeed, the great white shark is a marine predator and can be dangerous for humans, they’re not actually monsters, you know.
In fact, like almost any other form of life on this planet, sharks fulfill a vital role in marine ecosystems. By picking weak members of any given species they feed on as prey, they help ensure that the species as a whole stays strong enough to survive. Against its own worst enemy, however, the great white shark has little means to defend itself. And that enemy is us humans.
Ocean Ramsey, who grew up in Hawaii and San Diego, and is a professional scuba instructor and life-long diver and surfer, has had may encounters with geat whites. But all of them were peaceful, because she says she has “respect for their capabilities, a lot of experience interacting with animals and reading body language, behavior,” and is “comfortable with my own water abilities.”
Because of her experiences with sharks and other sea-dwelling animals, Ocean has made it her task to help protect these species, and to promote a more positive image of those that have a bad reputation with humans. In the video past the break, you can see her swim peacefully with a great white shark–an experience that most of us will never make. What it goes to show is that sharks, while dangerous predators, are also intelligent beings that we can peacefully coexist with.
For more information on Ocean Ramsey and her quest to save the great white shark, please visit Water Inspired.