I have always had a dream to swim with sharks. Sharks are my absolute favourite animal! I have always had an interest in them. In fact, one year I got a big book on sharks and I still read it to this day.
In my research, I discovered that sharks are amazing animals. They have been alive longer than the dinosaurs - that’s over 400 million years! Sharks are the top predators in the ocean and maintain a healthy marine population but every year at least 100 million sharks are killed just for their fins. Pollution and fishing nets also contribute to their deaths.
A lot is being done to help sharks. Marine sanctuaries and reserves study shark populations, migratory routes and interactions with people using tracking devices. Education also inform and influence many people to stop fishing and prevent littering in the ocean. We can all make a difference by helping the animals in our ecosystem! So let’s make a change!
Before going on this trip, my number one thing to do was swim with sharks in the ocean! We went on a snorkelling tour in the Galápagos Islands and I was really excited to see all the animals! We stopped in a few different places and were lucky to see green sea turtles, fish and coral. Then we headed to a place where our family had already visited. So, while half of the boat went on a hike there, we were offered a chance to snorkel in the mangroves.
Just before we got in the water our guide said to us, “Congratulations you are going to swim with sharks”! I was a bit nervous at first because I didn’t know what to expect so I stayed close to the group.
The water was very murky so I couldn’t see anything until the guide pointed out a shadow. It was a shark! I couldn’t tell what kind it was until we got to the clear water, then I noticed they were white tip reef sharks. At the dock at night we saw baby black tip reef sharks. They weren’t that big, so I thought we would swim with those types of sharks...NO! These were 6 - 7 feet long! I screamed in excitement!
There were only two or three at first, but then I started to notice more, and then we found this cave and there were at least a dozen of them. They are nocturnal so they were sleeping. They were all piled on top of each other and lying very still. They were so close you could reach your hand out and touch them, but I didn’t touch them. I felt a rush of excitement bolt through me. I had to remind myself this wasn’t an aquarium, it was the wild. I kept thinking to myself, “Oh my gosh! I can’t believe I am seeing this right now”.
This was such an amazing experience I couldn’t even take it all in. I will always remember swimming with sharks. It was a dream come true.
We're the Danchuks - follow our explorations and family adventures in a wide world (2018).