Skyler Thomas and his team at White Shark Video believe that the wrong message about sharks reaches a larger audience than the right message. So he resorted to cutting his wrist on a shark dive to prove a point.
White Shark Video — a conservation-focused film company — posted the above video to Facebook last week, achieving its goal of turning heads. Thomas makes a small cut on his wrist to release blood into the water and show that the nearby blacktip sharks — apparently drawn in by chum — are uninterested in attacking.
“Sharks: They can smell one drop of blood in an Olympic-size swimming pool,” states the video with on-screen text. “Which means they can smell everything else too, such as things they actually care about. Which does not include you, and apparently not me either."
Thomas and his team — including Dan Abbott and Ollie Putnam — made the video off Aliwal Shoal in South Africa, according to GrindTV.
"It is quite egotistical (and fear-based) to think a shark is going to drop everything it's doing, ignore all the other smells in the ocean, and come after us,” Thomas told GrindTV. "Critics are saying I should do the video with tigers, bulls, and white sharks. I'm happy to — they just need to raise funds for the trip."
Thomas says he was inspired to make the video after hearing a shark-culling proponent claim that you’d likely by bitten by a shark if you were in the water with a cut.
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According to NOAA, “sound, rather than sight or smell, seems to be a shark's primary cue for moving into an area. … Though blood itself may not attract sharks, its presence in combination with other unusual factors will excite the animals and make them more prone to attack.”
Sharks are among the most misunderstood animals on the planet — and while we’d never suggest harming yourself while diving — it’s important to learn more about these fish in order to help protect them.