Swimming With Sharks: Everything You Need to Know

Allan I. Fleming

Ocean Ramsey’s daily life is centered all over the sea. The daughter of a swimmer and a diver, Ramsey grew up in Hawaii and was launched to the ocean at a younger age and immediately created a enthusiasm for snorkeling and later, diving.

At age seven, Ramsey encountered her first shark. With no preconceived notions, she did not knowledge the worry that lots of would upon encountering an apex predator up shut. As a substitute, she was fascinated. The formative knowledge set the trajectory for her life’s perform.

Nowadays, Ramsey interacts with sharks on a daily foundation. She has worked with above 32 distinct species all over the world and devotes her time to shark study and conservation. She is also the co-founder of A single Ocean, a Hawaii-based mostly study and dive procedure that takes readers on pelagic free-diving excursions wherever they have the prospect to face sharks up shut, in the wild.

With restricted understanding compounded by Hollywood portrayals of sharks as vicious predators, lots of people today worry sharks and, in flip, the ocean. Although sharks should really definitely be highly regarded, there is extra to them than just a toothy grin a lethal bite. Listed here, Ramsey shares frequent misconceptions about sharks and the best procedures for remaining safe in the sea.

Swimming with Sharks Ocean Ramsay Hawaii great white sharks
Juan Oliphant @JuanSharks @OneOceanDiving

MEN’S JOURNAL: What are frequent misconceptions about sharks?
OCEAN RAMSAY: Popular misconceptions are if you pee in the water, they’re going to observe you down and go immediately after you. If you have a minimize, they’re going to odor it and go immediately after you. If a shark sees you, it is going to go immediately after you. That they eat anything.

Definitely those people things are not correct. Sharks swim by people today all working day each working day and they choose not to attack—we know that from tag information and drone footage. I swim with them all working day, each working day. And provided the prospect, if they can distinguish us from a normal prey item, and they’re not in a starved-kind issue or they’re not competing with every other, they’re not going to go immediately after us.

There are considerably less than ten human fatalities, globally, every 12 months. On the other aspect, 70-one hundred million sharks are killed every 12 months largely just for their fins.


Swimming with Sharks Ocean Ramsay Hawaii great white sharks
Juan Oliphant @JuanSharks @OneOceanDiving


What are some measures people today can consider to stay safe?
Evaluate environmental situations. Never swim, surf, dive, or engage in in the water right in entrance of a river mouth or harbor mouth. Avoid swimming, splashing, and surfing all over fishing piers or anyplace wherever you see someone fishing. Also, just stay clear of splashing on the floor in common attempt to decrease noise. If you’re a swimmer, constantly look around—when I’m swimming, I like to scan beneath my arm and look back at the rear of me and once in a while prevent and flip.


What should really you do if you face a shark?
The first issue you should really do is look at it and face it—not just look at it but in fact face your system towards it. Sharks converse with system language so you genuinely want to make it distinct to the shark that you see it. Then you should really increase your fins or GoPro or anything you have towards the shark to have one thing that is a non-human appendage to increase your particular place cushion.

If it is a really massive particular person, perhaps on the brink of starvation (this is really rare), it might proceed to come nearer and bump or bite your fins or your GoPro. At this issue, you would want to place your hand on top of its head. You do not want to flip your back to them, you do not want to splash, and you do not want to swim absent quickly—just slowly but surely back absent. But commonly just experiencing them, looking at them, placing your fins towards them, and standing your floor is plenty of for them to come up and then flip off to the aspect.

Swimming with Sharks Ocean Ramsay Hawaii great white sharks
Juan Oliphant @JuanSharks @OneOceanDiving

What tips would you supply to someone who is afraid of sharks?
Appear diving with me! Get above that worry and do not enable it maintain you back in daily life. My parents normally reported, “If you do not realize one thing, shed gentle on it and find out as a great deal as you can about it.” I think that when people today find out about things, they can far better enjoy them. That’s vital for conservation simply because when people today realize and enjoy sharks, they’re extra probably to assistance guard them.

Swimming with Sharks Ocean Ramsay Hawaii great white sharks
Juan Oliphant @JuanSharks @OneOceanDiving

How do you desire people today perceived sharks?
I desire that people today appeared at sharks as just as vital as dolphins and whales. Sharks are basically like the health professionals of the ocean culture. And they will need to be guarded simply because they retain ailments from spreading, and they effects all of the decrease trophic-amount populations. Hollywood emphasizes sharks as monsters, but they’re not. They are apex predators, but they are the most well mannered predators, the most clever predators, and people today do not give them credit history for that. And they are genuinely vital for marine ecosystems.

Swimming with Sharks Ocean Ramsay Hawaii great white sharks
Juan Oliphant @JuanSharks @OneOceanDiving

What is one thing most people today do not know about sharks?
Sharks have a total social hierarchy and system language. And every particular person has its own disposition and temperament, aka identity. Often people today are astonished to know that they have a language it is just a system language—kind of like sign language as opposed to French.

— Uncover out extra at A single Ocean, and comply with Ramsey on Instagram.

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