Sharks/Fish with teeth: Are they actually a threat?
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I am hearing a lot of reports of over aggressive fish on Catalina Island, CA in areas such as the dive park and Lovers Cove. Divers and Snorkelers are sadly associating humans as a food source and biting fingers till they bleed.
I've seen 2 big green morays & maybe 3 3-4 foot barracuda. None bothered me. Have seen a few stingrays; they didn't want to be close enough to bother me. Lionfish kept their distance. I mainly worry about scorpionfish while tooling around the shallow rubble at the end of dives in Bonaire. I've seen quite a few scorpionfish & lionfish.
On the issue of your odds of getting attacked by a shark, yes they are very low, but I suspect those figures are generated by comparing annual attacks rates against the human population. Not a valid figure when the majority of the population probably doesn't enter the ocean in a given year, & the overwhelming majority don't spend more than a few hours in it in a given year. You'd need to control for attacks vs. 'man hours in ocean water' to get a useful figure a diver might employ. It'd still be really low.
Concerns about shark attacks tend to center around twilight times (if memory serves), low viz., spear fishing & being at the surface (if GWS are the concern, out of fear of being mistaken for a seal/sea lion). Concerns about moray eels, and to some extent barracuda, are raised concerning those used to lionfish handouts from divers, or low viz. environments for barracuda. Spiny lobster hunters use protective gloves to reach into holes due to moray bite risk (among other things).
As long as you don't corner or pole wild life you don't have anything to worry about. Just like humans, fish don't like to be touched, cornered or feel threatened. Look but don't touch...
Originally Posted by RIteen
Something that occurred to me not too long ago, was the idea of those, rather large, fish with lots of teeth, otherwise known as sharks, barracuda, as well as bluefish! I realise if a Goldfish was so inclined, it could probably injure you, but in reality what is the danger of said fish? I am referring to the Northern Atlantic specifically, home to everything from Great Whites to barracuda, to the infamous "marine piranha"...
I realise that my concerns are probably simply the result of Hollywood and scare-stories, but my idea of fun is not becoming something's dinner...
For those of you concerned with the shark aspect of the original question, you might enjoy this website. Has lots of info as well as color coded maps. Perfect for data geeks like me. It also has data on other fish and animals too.