I don't know what to say or do to get people to listen. How do you fight for an animal that no one wants to save? People see images like the one on the right and they're glad to see it. That just sickens me.
Anyways, the reason I bring this up now is that an estimate of Great White populations has come out at the American Association for the Advancement of Science Annual Meeting in San Diego, based on research tracking more than 150 Great Whites done by Barbara Block. In 2000, Great Whites were listed at Vulnerable by the IUCN, though no one knew how many there were. The researchers from Stanford found that while these sharks were sighted quite frequently between Hawaii and California, they were often the same sharks. This led them to look at the estimated size of the entire population, and what they found was sobering. There are only an estimated 3,500 left.
The ever-cherished tigers, who have seen extinction looming for decades, are well over 5,000. Polar bears? 25,000 or so. And while upwards of 3,000 dolphins are killed in Taji every year, the worldwide population is huge. They're not even endangered.
I'm not saying that what happens in Taji isn't deplorable, or that tigers or polar bears don't deserve to be protected. My point is that we're on the verge of losing one of the most impressive species on the planet, and it seems like no one cares.
No, it's worse. Just by skimming the comments on one of the popular news articles about this you'll find statements like these:
"Good riddance. They eat people. No, we don't have to give them room to breathe. We don't have to do anything that's not to our advantage. I don't go for all this stuff about top predators being essential - obviously if there are as few Great Whites as all that, they cannot be very pivotal in the ecosystem. Eliminate them."You see, this is why I get so angry. People disgust me sometimes. And we say sharks are the heartless, ruthless predators? Please.
"If these stupid sharks can't adapt and evolve to the advances in industrial fishing over the past century then they ought to be made extinct."