Another interest of mine is sharks. I began with the typical small boy's interest in the "blood and guts" of shark attacks on humans. Living in New Jersey, one is never too far from the ocean to read about killer sharks mauling swimmers. I later progressed to the natural history and classification of various shark species. I had been fascinated with the widely published Rodney Fox attack in Australia in 1963, and the famous series of attacks along the New Jersey coast in 1916. (A recent book about the 1916 attacks -- Another book on the same subject) When the book and movie "Jaws" came out in the 70's I was already fairly well-read on the subject, but was motivated to get in even deeper (as it were).
Today I rarely miss a shark documentary or "Shark Week" on The Discovery Channel.
Natural history corner:
At left, a group of museum sharkophiles pose with a re-creation of the jaws of Charcharodon Megalodon. This huge shark, a cousin of the white shark (some say it's closer to the mako) died out about 1.5 million years ago at the end of the Pliocene Epoch. All that remains of this once fearsome predator are fossil teeth of impressive size which can be as long as 4 inches. From the size of its teeth, it is believed that the Megalodon was three times as big as the white shark and could attain a length of 50 feet and weigh 40 to 45 tons. By comparison, the biggest white shark known until now was caught in the Mediterranean near Malta and measured just over 21 feet.
This monster is considered extinct, but some conspiracy aficionados believe it's still lurking in the deepest parts of the Pacific Ocean. (Of course these conspiracy buffs suspect Bill Clinton is responsible for hiding this amazing fact from us.)
painting on the right Is John Singleton Copley's
WATSON AND THE SHARK.
It is Copley's interpretation of an actual shark attack. (but not a very accurate rendition of a real shark.)
GALLERY OF ART
in Washington DC and get the full story on Watson
and what happened to him.
Of course some of the more sensational media aren't satisfied with real-life sharks; they have to invent stories and alter photos to sell newspapers.
For Kevin, Catherine & Neil...
It's a shark-eat-shark world out there!
Visit My Shark Photo Gallery and Shark Links Page
.... (Be sure to see the rare Hopkins shark)
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