Sharks. Great…white…sharks. Ever since watching Steven Spielberg’s monumental flick “Jaws” as a kid, swimming in the ocean has taken on a decidedly tense flavor for me. Alpha predators swimming out of sight, MADE of teeth (or at least, that’s how I see it), hunting around for a ME buffet. Nope, don’t like it. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, how does one deal with this new information:
The tracking device on a tagged nine foot long great white shark washed up on shore in Australia. Data on the device showed that the shark had a rapid temperature rise and then a sudden 580 degrees plunge. The working theory by researchers is that the shark was eaten by a MUCH bigger animal, which accounted for the temperature rise as it entered its digestive system. Then it presumably went back down to the considerably lower and darker depths which it lives, waiting for the next time I dip a toe in the ocean.
WHAT THE HECK EATS A 9 FOOT GREAT WHITE SHARK???
Barring Godzilla (which sadly, the researchers have done) their belief is that it was eaten by a “colossal, cannibal great white shark”. Does anyone else think that we might be dealing with a cryptid situation here? Perhaps the titanic prehistoric shark, the Megalodon, isn’t as extinct as we thought? These things grew to be 50 feet long (possibly even bigger) and are considered to be one of the largest and most powerful predators in vertebrate history.
I’m not even going to take a bath for six months after this, much less get in any large bodies of water.
You can check out “The Hunt for the Super Predator”, an upcoming Smithsonian Institute documentary on June 25th if you want to get even more freaked out.