Essay by matt HartHigh School, 12th grade March 1997

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"It's tail swayed slowly from side to side, pushing the hunters body through the murky

water. All signs of motion were non-existant, except for the rhythmic movement of the

water over the five gill slits on either side of it's head. Slowly gaining speed, the shady

figures unmoving eyes fixed on it's target, a lost harbor seal pup. As the distance between

the predator and it's prey grew closer, the jaws of the massive fish drew forward,

exposing nearly eight rows of razor sharp teeth. Strings of it's previous meal hung in

rows from between it's teeth. Sensing danger, the harbor seal frantically tried to find a

place to seek refuge, but it was too late. The jaws of the shark closed around the seal with

an astounding 14,000 pounds of pressure, cutting the seal in half. The Great White shark

claims another victim.1"

Any one who's seen the famous movie series "Jaws" may look at the Great White

Shark in a similar manner.

Perhaps it's the way that Hollywood uses a mix of fact and

fiction in the series. This may have frightened many people into hating the Great White

for it's ferocity. It might have also been the size of the shark in the movie that's kept

thousands of people off the beaches and out of the water. Better yet, it could have been

the overall storyline: A Great White shark with an eating disorder and a taste for human

flesh. Perhaps that's what is keeping vacationers from grabbing their trousers and


Over all, there have been 1026 attacks on humans by sharks in the last ten years.

Only 294 of these attacks have been linked to Great White sharks. That's roughly the

number of people who drown each year in swimming accidents. Of these 294...