Shark Attack
August 2018 by V. R. Duin


As the strange procession neared shore
There was heard a frightened roar.
“That's no dolphin towing the craft.
Out of the water! Leave your raft!”
(“Little Ray & Shark Patch Things Up”)

The sharks in Reunion Island do not bring the shark attack reading fun to Little Ray & Shark Patch Things Up, but this anti-bullying book for children may help the Reunion Island shark problem.

Shark attacks are rare. Little Ray & Shark Patch Things Up was written in defense of sharks. Reading fun takes kids from fear to fascination. Few fish are as feared. Sharks deserve celebration.

Sharks in Reunion Island are less risky than other dangers. These sharks were named for their trouble spot. The Florida Museum of Natural History breaks down The Odds of a Shark Attack Compared to Other Risks. Printing Little Ray & Shark's book in French might help.

Animals are stereotyped. Some animals earn their bad reputations. Humans and domestic cats kill for sport. Most animals kill for food. Reunion Island sharks give bad press to all sharks. Little Ray turns a circling shark into a better understanding of these fish.

People are not favorite shark food. After a taste test, most sharks drop humans. Keep a shark in sight. Sharks are known to circle. They spin their bodies to come from behind or below. An unaware person may be sampled. Tiny sharks can make huge wounds.

Problems with a few sharks may be blown out of size. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America PNAS, discuss Human Development of the Ability to Learn from Bad News Shark depictions rarely are good.

The press focuses on problems. It is not fun to read about scary shark attacks. A child, who has never seen sharks, may feel no fear. Danger may not seem real. A child, who has seen a film or a picture of a shark attack death or injury, may not want to get near the water.

Most shark encounters end well. Sharks cause few deaths. About ten people in the world die from shark attacks yearly. Within that time, millions of sharks are killed for sport and by accident. Some bad news has sharks everywhere under attack.

Sharks have a scary image. It is time to fix the bad image caused by a few sharks for the rest of them. Little Ray helps shed a friendlier light on sharks. Sharks give people reasons to swim at guarded beaches and stay out of the water at night. Thrills can end poorly.

Sharks can be seen from shore. An arriving shark often gives people time to leave the water. A shark makes a good co-star for Little Ray. They work together to get friends out of the water and back to shore after their boat engine dies. There is good in them.

With shark bites, nobody dies. Their teeth may be tougher and sharper, but great white sharks don't bite much harder than people. Bigger size puts more power behind their bites. Sharks can weigh ten times the weight of a person. Size generally is an advantage in battles.

Shark sightings involve seeing without harm. Little Ray's readers don't face sun damage. There is no need for sunscreen, special clothing or sunglasses for UV light. Reading can be done inside or in shade.

Deadly shark attack has clear meaning. Reunion Island surfing sharks were known for frequent, nasty attacks. In books and movies, sharks are all about scares. These may have led to revenge killing of these animals. People seek adventure and excitement. They want to look brave and strong.

Shark encounter means contact with sporting equipment. People are not touched. Little Ray's shark friend takes nips out of objects. This encounter sets the scene for Little Ray's adventure. A shark can catch a stingray. If these fish can get along, people can, too.

Surfing is returning to Reunion Island. It is common for sharks to taste test things, like boats and surfboards. Sometimes, a surfer gets in the way. Sharks are unlikely to put up with nonsense. Some sharks seem to have no sense of pain. They may continue a feeding frenzy when injured.

Surfing seems to attract sharks. Pizard's GURPS Miscellanea notes Carcharhinid Sharks, or requiem sharks, are known for such attacks. Splashing from paddling surf boards to surfing areas may attract them. Falls into shark-infested waters get attention from these fearless, bold fish.

Nets offer low-cost safety for beaches. Guards quickly rescue swimmers and waders in shallow water. It is harder to protect surfers in deep areas. Bans get posted. Places with shark problems warn about possible dangers. Warnings respect sharks.

Safety tips for attacking sharks. Stay calm and slowly leave the water or group together and stay still. The shark may leave. Hit an attacking shark with an object or punch it in the eyes, gills or snout. Sharks abandon troublesome catches.

Little Ray's shark friend is not aggressive. Defense by the boaters is not necessary. It creates a stir for beach goers. As it pulls close to shore, folks leave the water. People can work together to solve the shark image problem. Visit Elasmodiver's Shark Blog for Unexpected Encounters

Sharks are in troubled waters. The United States, South Africa and Australia head the shark problem charts. The Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida published a Yearly Worldwide Shark Attack Summary.

Sharks are creatures of habit. They return to successful feeding areas and perform routine activities. They make automatic responses. Many attacks are pushed by outside activities. Great White Sharks, Tiger Sharks and Bull Sharks are top suspects. Attacks may not be inside goals.

Support ban and boycotts against shark and ray products. People can stop mass shark killings for sport and shark fin trade. Adult sharks weigh from a less than pound to many tons. Sharks are threatened with extinction. Information may change this.

Bigger fish may be safer fish. Thailand is the place to see mega-sized rays and whale sharks. Whale sharks are considered the largest fish in the world. Their teeth are not for biting. Some sharks eat plants and grasses. Stingrays are strict carnivores. Who would have guessed?

The Manta Ray is shy. These gigantic fish dwarf humans. Giant Mantas use sucking parts to filter small food particles. They have no teeth. Nobody knows how many giant oceanic manta rays remain in the wild. They will not attack a person.

The book begins with Little Ray playing in the water. Boating friends enjoy his antics. A circling bull shark changes things. The words to this video are: “Join with the best and respect the rest. We never know how things will go.” Illustrations and ideas are from the book. (34 seconds)


Can Little Ray help the Reunion Island shark problem?

  • anti-bullying book for children Little Ray says:

    The shark in this anti-bullying book for children may bite things, but it won't offend people.

  • Reunion Island Shark Problem Little Ray says:

    The sharks in Reunion Island have an image problem, but images can be fixed with facts, team-building and efforts to stop stereotyping.

    • Shark Attack Reading FunLittle Ray says:

      Distracted by fears of a shark attack, did anyone notice the shark in Little Ray' story is a bull shark that can swim in fresh water?