Sharks have been celebrated as powerful gods by some native cultures. And today, sharks are recognized as apex predators of the world’s ocean. But, we think sharks have got a bad rap. Here are 8 reasons why we think SHARKS ARE AWESOME:




Shark Week Collection

1. Sharks Are Awesome Because They Are The Guardians of the Ocean:

Sharks are the Guardians of the Ocean. They take care of a system that is so vital to our quality of life and, ultimately, to our survival. Ecosystems are finely tuned systems that are based on many species. All members play an integral role. The top predators are critical in keeping eco systems in balance. The ocean needs apex predators. A natural balance is nearly impossible to recreate once it has been destroyed. Because sharks are very slow to mature and will only have a small number of pups a year (or every other year), population sizes of sharks don’t recover easily once they have been decimated, unlike other schooling fish such as tuna, which hatch thousands of eggs every year. It is estimated that even if all commercial fishing were to cease, many of the large sharks may not recover within 50 years, if ever. As apex predators, sharks are not equipped to withstand predation themselves and are highly vulnerable to exploitation. We are their biggest enemy. Read more

2. We Love Sharks Because We Respect Our Elders

Sharks have Seniority Rights in The Mammal World. In fact, sharks are some of the oldest animals on the planet.  They have been around much longer than man or any other mammal.

3. Sharks are Incredibly Diverse

There are an estimated 350 known species of sharks, with a great range of size and shape AND most sharks are harmless to humans. Of all shark species, about 80% grow to less than 1.6 meters (5 feet) and are unable to hurt people or rarely encounter people.

4. Did You Know That Sharks Help Oceans Everywhere?

Sharks in the Bahamas

Photo by Jaren Rice – Rokers Point Settlement, The Bahamas Floating over nurse sharks in the Bahamas on Great Exuma

Almost every ocean in the world has some type of shark. Sharks live in all parts of the oceans, from shallow to deep water, and from the tropics to the Polar Regions. So no matter where you go, sharks impact the ocean and help sustain the oceanic ecosystem.

5. Sharks Have Super Senses

Shark Senses

Sharks don’t communicate with sound. They don’t even have organs for sound production. But, sharks make up for it in other ways. They have remarkable senses. In addition to touch, taste and a keen sense of smell, sharks possess excellent vision at close range and two unique senses – The Lateralis System (to detect vibration) and the Ampullae of Lorenzini (Sensory organ to detect very weak electric fields). Since everything living produces an electrical field, the sharks can sense that something alive is in the water before it even sees or smells it.

6. And, They Have DARN Great Teethy Smiles

A shark may grow and use over 20,000 teeth in its lifetime. Sharks never run out of teeth.  Behind the first set in the front are many rows developing. As the next row moves forward a full set replaces the damaged, older set.

7. Sharks Have Got Brains

Shark Brains

Sharks’ relatively large and complex brains are comparable in size to those of supposedly more advanced animals like mammals and birds.

8. We Can Relate to Sharks Because They Are Misunderstood

Sharks Misunderstood

According to the International Shark Attack Files, of shark attacks recorded since the year 1580, only 10 of 400 species were involved in fatal attacks. Bull, Tiger, and white Sharks account for almost all attacks–and many of those attacks are assumed to be accidental. Media and movies have given sharks a bad name. Here are some misconceptions and the reality of why sharks are not the bad guys:

LAST BUT NOT LEAST, CONSIDER THIS… Sharks are awesome because they are part of every indigenous culture that lives near the sea. Humans have felt the power and presence of sharks since they have first laid eyes on the ocean. They have revered them as deities, gods, manifestations of ancestors and guardians for as long as cultures have existed.




This year, Oceana and Discovery are teaming up to help protect vulnerable hammerhead sharks, which are one of the species most threatened by the shark fin trade because of their highly valuable fins. Among all shark species, fins from as many as 73 million sharks end up in the global shark fin trade each year. The fight against this brutal, wasteful practice is also supported by collaborations with major brands that raise money for Oceana’s campaigns and create content to educate fans about why healthy oceans need sharks.

Watch shark week and visit their website to learn more about these important creatures.

Status of the Shark - Discovery Channel Shark Week