Shark Attacks of 1916

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This book is about a series of shark attacks that occurred around New Jersey in 1916.  It covers the events by looking at multiple aspects of what happened and what might have caused a rouge shark to behave in such a manner.

The author gives a brief and easy to understand description of the evolution and biology of sharks.  It looks at what makes the shark unique and its place as an apex predator in the ecosystem. 

The author also explains what was happening in history during the early 1900s and the societal norms of the time.  This was a time of change and more people were entering the ocean for leisure than had ever done before in American history.

One of the most gripping parts of the book was how the author delved into the personal lives of each of the victims.  He talked about their family history, their work or school career, and the long term effects each attack had surviving family members.

This was an interesting and educational book to read.  I found it riveting and would highly recommend it.

 

Water Calms the Soul

There’s something about a body of water that calms the soul.  It could be an ocean, sea, river, lake, or even a pool.

When the sunlight hits the water it glitters and reflects beauty.  Listening to the waves or watching the peaceful ripples tend to relax a person.  Playing in the water on a hot summer day cools the body and refreshes the soul.

There’s something about water that sets us free.

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Dauphin Island, Alabama

Gwen and I went to Dauphin Island, which is located in Mobile County, Alabama.  It’s connected to the mainland by the Gordon Persons Bridge.

Dauphin Island was named after Louis XIV’s great-grandson.  He was the heir (the dauphin) and future Louis XV of France.

This is a beautiful place to visit, with white sandy beaches, Sea Lab – Estuarium, a military fort dating back to the 1800’s, Audubon Bird Sanctuary, walking trails, restaurants and places to shop.

Sharks are Misunderstood

I think sharks are misunderstood.  They are not mindless killing machines, they are actually very fascinating creatures.

  • The smallest species of shark is the Pale Catshark, and it only grows to eight inches in length.
  • The largest species of shark is the Whale shark, which can grow to 75 feet long.
  • The skeleton of a shark is not made of bone, instead it is make of cartilage.
  • Sharks are saltwater fish; however, the Bull Shark is capable of living in freshwater and saltwater.
  • The sharks skin is so rough that it has been used as sandpaper.
  • Sharks have small holes around their head that can detect electrical fields in the water.  This allows the shark to locate prey, even if they cannot see it.  It also explains why sharks have been known to attack metal objects, which give off a weak electrical field.

The more I learn about sharks, the more impressed I become.  They truly are fascinating creatures.