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 Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O

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PostSubject: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Fri Dec 10, 2010 9:40 pm

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By ABIGAIL HAUSLOHNER / SHARM EL-SHEIKH Abigail Hauslohner / Sharm El-sheikh – Fri Dec 10, 12:00 pm ET
Hoping to protect the local tourism industry over July 4, the beach resort's mayor initially downplays the danger of shark attacks - but is forced to bring in a marine biologist and a shark hunter when things turn really ugly. That was the story line in Jaws, Steven Spielberg's 1975 blockbuster movie, and a similar scenario is currently being played out in real life at the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.

It began 10 days ago when the normally pristine tropical waters turned a murky red, after sharks mauled three Russians and a Ukrainian over a two-day period. With the world-renowned snorkel and dive center heading into the holiday high season, local governor Mohammed Shosha closed off the beaches for 48 hours, during which time the authorities killed two sharks. He then declared the all clear and reopened the beaches. But within 24 hours, in keeping with the Jaws story line, it became brutally clear that Shosha had been wrong: a German woman standing chest-deep in the water was killed by another shark. (Read "Humans and Sharks: Why Can't We Be Friends?")

"We did some efforts last week but I think we failed," Salem Saleh, director of the town's Tourism Authority told TIME on Monday. He acknowledged that the sharks responsible for the killings are probably still at large. The resort, which Egyptian authorities say draws some 4 million tourists every year, has become the site of an international biological murder mystery.

Over six days, five swimmers were attacked by sharks. That compares to just six attacks over the previous decade in Egypt, according to the Global Shark Attack File, a scientific archive that documents shark attacks worldwide. And at least six of those 11 incidents are believed to have involved the solitary oceanic whitetip - a shark species that doesn't usually rank among the top killers. More startling still is that the clear, coral-rimmed waters off Sharm el-Sheikh aren't exactly shark central. "The last sharks I saw were maybe four or five months ago," says Sherrif Khairat, a local dive instructor, who leads two or three dives a day. A shark sighting is considered "lucky," he says, because the animals are so rare.

And then the story gets downright creepy: scientists and government authorities declared Wednesday night, after a day of preliminary investigations, that at least two of the five attacks had been carried out by a single shark - a lone "serial attacker," says shark expert George Burgess, one of three American scientists flown in to find answers. "This is a really unusual event - not just because they occurred so close to each other in such a geographic space, but because of the fact that we can actually say with certainty that one individual shark was involved in two of them without fail," he says. "That has not been documented before."

Less than two weeks after the first of the series of attacks, scientists are still scratching their heads as to what motivated the rampage. They say there has never been proof of a shark acquiring a taste for human flesh, but there are no absolutes in science. They say the serial-killer shark is a member of a migratory species that often travels dozens of miles in a single day. But it could still be lurking in the same waters. (View photographs of sharks.)

Egyptian authorities now plan to enforce the ban on swimming and water sports indefinitely - with exceptions made for expert divers and protected swimming areas. It's a decision that has the local tourism outfits already cutting their losses as Sharm el-Sheikh heads into high season. "We're not selling masks or any flippers because the beach is closed," says Bishoy Boutros, who hawks fins, masks and T-shirts, including one with a shark on it that reads "How 'Bout Lunch?"

[Video: California surfer’s board circled by great white sharks]

State authorities say the shark attacks will hardly cause a blip in tourism revenues, but the governor's public posturing days after the woman's death - sending his deputy for a dip before a boatload of beaming reporters - suggests they fear the worst. Moldovan tour guide Elena Ribac says the shark scare has dramatically cut bookings. Tourists, she says, "come just for the sea, so if there is no opportunity to go to the sea, there is no reason to come here."

Local explanations for the shark surge varied wildly in the days following the first attacks, citing everything from climate change to the de rigueur blaming of local calamities on alleged Israeli plots. More sober explanations are fewer, and hardly final.

Local fishermen say their catches of fish that sharks would feed on are lower this year, and sharks could be seeking alternative food sources. Snorkelers may also have exacerbated the danger by feeding the fish, in violation of local regulations. "The fish get in the habit of staying in certain places where they get easy food," says Khairat. "After that the big fish that eat the small fish will also come closer - and then the bigger fish." (Read "A Brief History of Shark Week.")

And then there's the sheep hypothesis. Last month, Muslims celebrated Islam's Feast of the Sacrifice, during which it is traditional for each family to slaughter a sheep - and the extra demand requires that many more sheep are imported. Ships transporting sheep were discovered to have dumped carcasses in the Red Sea, South Sinai authorities say, drawing sharks to the area. On Wednesday, the governor said authorities are taking legal action against one of the shipping companies.

The question is whether the sharks involved in the latest attacks will return to the waters off Sharm el-Sheikh. "These are open-ocean sharks that are living in an environment that is food-poor," says Burgess. "So when you do find food, you darn well better take advantage of it. Do they remember things? Sure, they remember where the good places to eat were, and they'll come back."

[Related: California beach closed after another fatal attack]

Running through the different theories is the sense that human behavior is conditioning the sharks to stick around. "Sharks can be trained and are trained, specifically in some of these feeding dives where they become accustomed to being fed by the humans," says Burgess. In some cases, sharks become so accustomed to the sound of a boat engine signaling feeding time that all boat operators have to do is rev it up. (Comment on this story.)

But he cautions against overanalyzing, because sharks are still just big predators with little brains. "They're not connect-the-dots kind of animals," he says. "They're basically swimming, sensory machines." Sometimes, a killing spree, however rare, could be explained by little more than a convergence of the right variables. "Sometimes we make mistakes, sometimes they make mistakes. And sometimes we just happen to be in the wrong place at the right time - for them."

Ok Yea O___________________________________________O
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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Wed Dec 15, 2010 2:45 pm

Well, shark attacks are actually really rare. They don't attack people often. They're more scared of us than you would think. So this is most likely a freak accident, as that article kinda says.

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Sat Dec 18, 2010 12:28 am

I know that. It is just freaky that they have like a psycho shark/s in the red sea O.O
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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Wed Jan 05, 2011 12:29 pm

Lol, psycho shark....That's like some razor cut way to say it.

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Fri Jan 07, 2011 7:47 am

*laughs* Psycho shark? We are the ones to say that when we, during fishing kill 3 sharks every single second? What would a lion do when you got too close to him? Lick you on the nose and let you scratch his neck? Course not. Why would sharks tolerate our presence in their water? No reason. And anyway, media has a way of blowing things out of proportion. I mean:
Quote :
Less than two weeks after the first of the series of attacks, scientists are still scratching their heads as to what motivated the rampage.
Scientists? anybody with half a brain would know that its the zoologists that would be working on it, not scientists.

Anyway, statistically, people have a more chance of drowning in their own bath tub than being killed by a shark. I don't see Egyptian authorities confiscating people's bathroom utilities. Fools the lot of them...

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:50 pm

Hey artrain, arnt zooligist a branch of scientists? seeing as how zoology is a branch of science.

Although you might be right with media blowing it up.
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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Mon Jan 10, 2011 2:05 am

I know the statistics Ar, but the article pointed out that a "serial killer" shark was leading the attacks. I just posted it because I found it interesting considering Attacks are so low.
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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Mon Jan 10, 2011 7:45 am

Mr Dragon wrote:
Hey artrain, arnt zooligist a branch of scientists? seeing as how zoology is a branch of science.
Course it is a branch of science. Almost everything's a branch of science. But that just states how pitifully uninformed the media is. And I have my doubts about believing someone so much uninformed.

Ce Ce Quan wrote:
I know the statistics Ar, but the article pointed out that a "serial killer" shark was leading the attacks. I just posted it because I found it interesting considering Attacks are so low.
Yes, yes, I know Cece. I was just putting my personal opinions on it, is all. And I really don't give them a slack when the media make portray things in a twisted sort of way. Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:22 am

Yes, the new media really is kinda gruesome about everything... It's rather pathetic.

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:00 pm

Yea I guess that makes sense a little artain.

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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Wed Jan 12, 2011 8:12 pm

Something pieved off that Shark!
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PostSubject: Re: Crazy Shark attacks in the Red Sea O_O   Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:19 am

What makes you think that DD?

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