Most people, even animal lovers, are pretty scared of sharks. Most depictions and coverage of sharks suggest that they are violent, dangerous creatures. However, sharks actually have reason to be way more afraid of humans. Way more sharks are killed by humans every year than humans killed by sharks (I’m talking hundreds vs. millions.)
Cristina Zenato has been a diver for 26 years and she’s spent 25 of those years with sharks. Zenato loves sharks and as soon as she noticed how many had hooks attached to them, she knew that she had to do something to help. In order to relieve these poor sea creatures of their pain, Zenato started removing the hooks from sharks. One shark, named Foggy Eye, had one inside her mouth. Zenato didn’t let that stop her; she reached her hand into Foggy Eye’s mouth and took the hook out. After the initial shock, Foggy Eye returned to her savior and offered her head for pets. Since that day, Foggy Eye never failed to show up during Zenato’s dives to say hi.
As Zenato removed hooks, more and more sharks kept showing up. She now has a box with over 300 hooks that she has removed from sharks during her dives! She wants people to understand that sharks are not inherently violent creatures. They are accepting and even can be quite vulnerable. Plus, they are crucial to keeping the underwater ecosystem in balance. Zenato’s amazing work and relationship with these sharks is so inspiring. She is proof that sharks are wildly misunderstood creatures that deserve protection and respect.
In order to help these poor sharks and so many other sea creatures that suffer as a result of fishing hooks and gear, it’s important we stop eating fish and take care of our oceans.
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