Shark Week is an annual week-long “marathon” of programs about Sharks on the Discovery Channel. Shark Week was originally developed in 1987 to raise awareness and respect for sharks. The popularity of Shark Week has dramatically increased over the past 26 years and is now broadcasted in over 72 countries.
In case you don’t know much about sharks and want to feel up to speed during Shark Week here are some fun facts about sharks.
15 Facts about Sharks:
1. There are more than 350 kinds of sharks.
2. You are 1,000 times more likely to drown in the sea than you are to be bitten by a shark. (After watching a few hours of Shark Week, this is good to know!)
3. A shark can hear a fish in the water from more than a mile away.
4. Scientists can determine the age of a shark by counting the rings that form on its vertebra, similar to counting the rings on a tree to tell its age.
5. Sharks are cartilaginous fish, which means that the structure of the animal’s body is formed of cartilage, instead of bone.
6. The teeth of sharks don’t have roots. They usually fall out after about a week.
7. It is estimated that the whale shark (the largest shark species) can live up to 100-150 years.
8. Sharks are not vicious man-eaters, at least, not all of them! Only 10 out of all the shark species are considered dangerous to humans.
9. Until the 16th century sharks were known as “sea dogs”.
10. Some sharks have eyes similar to a cat’s, with a mirror-like layer that allows them to see better in murky water.
11. Shoes, chairs, boxes of nails, drums, entire bottles of wine and the rear half of a horse are just some of the many bizarre objects that have been found in sharks’ stomachs over the years.
12. For every human killed by a shark, 2 million sharks are killed by humans.
13. Most sharks must swim constantly to force water through their mouths and over their gills because they lack the ability to pump water over their gills like the majority of fish.
14. Sharks’ ears are located inside their heads.
15. The tiger shark is the second-most dangerous shark in the world and is sometimes referred to as the “garbage can of the sea” because it will eat anything.