Shark-Attack Deaths Highest in 19 Years -- Travel Trends to Blame?

Publication: National Geographic Daily News

Author: Brian Handwerk


02/13/2012 - There wasn't a single shark-attack fatality in the United States in 2011. But attacks elsewhere increased a bit, resulting in 12 deaths worldwide—the most since 1993, according to the University of Flofrida's 2011 Worldwide Shark Attack Summary, released last week.

According to George Burgess, the report's author, both trends might be summed up in one word: tourism.

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Sometimes tourist development unwittingly encroaches into shark territory, said Matt Rand, director of global shark conservation for the Pew Environment Group.

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"Sharks really have more to fear from us then we do of them.

"We know that overall shark numbers are dramatically decreasing, and if things don't change, the threat of sharks really will be less [to humans]. Unfortunately that will also have major negative ramifications for the overall health of the world's oceans."

Read the full article, Shark-Attack Deaths Highest in 19 Years -- Travel Trends to Blame?, on the National Geographic Daily News' Web site.

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