This dramatic piece titled
Watson And The Shark (1778)
by John Singleton Copley is reknown for creating the first important figure of a black person (not a stereotype) in an American painting. I love the odd looking shark with the tiny teeth although the projected jaw is anatomically correct. The water off of the coast of Boston is cold, perfect for Great Whites who normally prey on plump sea lions.
The only Canadian shark attack recorded on canvas that I am aware of is this piece by Paul Calle. On a summer morning in 1953 off of the coast of Cape Breton Island two lobstermen were attacked in their dory by a Great White Shark.
John MacLeod survived by hanging on to the splintered wreckage.
John Burns drowned.
The shark swam away after attacking the boat and did not return.
If you are interested in learning about current and historical shark attacks on humans check out the International Shark Attack File http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/sharks/isaf/isaf.htm
There is a great deal of common sense involved in avoiding such encounters.
verify that aside from a few obvious places to avoid swimming the greatest number of attacks occur where the largest concentrations of humans splashing about (imitating prey items) coincides with the largest supply of sharks ie California, Florida, South Africa and Australia.
have survived for hundreds of millions of years because they are so perfectly adapted to their environment.
Aside from Orcas, other sharks and humans killing them, they patrol the oceans, a few lakes and rivers (Bull sharks in Nicaragua/Zambezi) doing what they do best; swimming, eating and making little sharks.
Now many species are endangered by commercial fishing and pollution, a worldwide conservation effort is required to protect them.
This is a hard sell because of movies like JAWS
that portray them as man eating demons.
Unfortunately this can happen.
I remember reading about Jacques Cousteau's encounter with a huge Great White while diving.
The fish voided it's bowels in shock and fled in the blink of an eye.
On the other hand if you were towed behind a boat near a sea lion colony in certain parts of the world (Farrallon Islands/Spencer Gulf ) the inevitable surprise attack from below would almost be guaranteed.
are often in danger due to their unfortunate resemblence to sea turtles or sea lions from below the surface.
That being said most bites are a sampling and the scrawny legs of a surfer are usually spit out and the shark moves on for fatter and juicier prey.
The sad fact that our fragile taxonomy is so vulnerable that even a minor attack and the loss of blood and drowning are usually the cause of death.
Still what on this Earth could possibly be more terrifying?