Study: Shark attacks declining

Feb 13, 2006
Shark

University of Florida scientists say shark attacks worldwide were lower in number last year, continuing a five-year downturn.

The researchers say greater safety precautions and "in-your-face" responses to confrontations with sharks went a long way in reducing the total number of attacks from 65 during 2004 to 58 in 2005 and fatalities from seven to four, said George Burgess, director of the International Shark Attack File housed at UF's Florida Museum of Natural History.

In contrast, there were 78 shark attacks -- 11 of them fatal -- during 2000, the all-time high record year for attacks since statistics have been kept.

Despite the worldwide decline, the number of attacks in the United States rose slightly, from 30 in 2004 to 38 last year. But that is still much lower than the recorded high of 52 in 2000.

In addition to last year's 38 U.S. attacks, Burgess tracked 10 in Australia, four in South Africa and one each in the Bahamas, St. Martin, Mexico, Fiji, Vanuatu and South Korea.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Explainer: How to solve a jewel heist (and why it takes so long)

Related Stories

Shark attacks are so unlikely, but so fascinating

Apr 09, 2015

Sharks are incredibly unlikely to bite you. They're even less likely to kill you. However, we remain fascinated with their ability – and occasional proclivity – to do just that. With so many things more ...

2012 US shark attacks highest since 2000

Feb 11, 2013

Shark attacks in the U.S. reached a decade high in 2012, while worldwide fatalities remained average, according to the University of Florida's International Shark Attack File report released today.

Shark attack deaths down in 2014

Feb 12, 2015

Three people died worldwide from shark attacks last year, far below the average of 6.3 deaths per year over the past decade, according to the International Shark Attack File report released by the University of Florida today.

Signs of hope for endangered sawfish

Dec 29, 2014

Approaching Port Everglades in a helicopter, Ryan Goldman peered down at the water and saw a ray swimming at unusually high speed.

Recommended for you

Top UK scientists warn against EU exit

23 hours ago

A group of leading British scientists including Nobel-winning geneticist Paul Nurse warned leaving the European Union could threaten research funding, in a letter published in The Times newspaper on Friday.

How we discovered the three revolutions of American pop

May 22, 2015

Dr Matthias Mauch discusses his recent scientific analysis of the "fossil record" of the Billboard charts prompted widespread attention, particularly the findings about the three musical "revolutions" that shaped the musical la ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.