Thursday, February 19, 2009

Downturn upside: Shark attacks dip in recession

You want good economic news? We have your good economic news.

Shark attacks worldwide dipped last year to their lowest level in five years, a University of Florida researcher reported today.

Last year saw 59 shark attacks around the world, compared to 71 in 2007, said George Burgess, an ichthyologist and director of the International Shark Attack File, which is housed at the University of Florida's Museum of Natural History.

The number of shark attacks in the United States dropped from 50 in 2007 to 41 last year, Burgess said. Of those, 32 were in Florida, the same as the previous year, followed by North Carolina and South Carolina with three each; Hawaii with two and California with one.

Burgess believes the recession may be responsible for the decline in shark attacks.

"I can't help but think that contributing to the reduction may have been the reticence of some people to take holidays and go to the beach for economic reasons," Burgess said in a news release.

On a related note, the New York Times explains how you can use the recession as a multi-purpose excuse.

(hat tip: AP)


Allyson said...

Actually the sharks are paid to bite but no one's been able to pay lately except for the Uber-wealthy so it's just been downhill since the recession. Sharks like cash. Cash is in short supply - so fewer bites. Perfectly understandable.

Anonymous said...

Never mind the lack of tourism is hurting the local economy of the beach communities.

Alysse said...

Nope, I think it is just public awareness from previous years. I was at a beach last year pack with people, the guards got notice of sharks coming down the beach and pulled everyone out. Seems they hired helicopters to watch the coast and set up a system between different beaches lifeguards to alert others. There were tons at the beach, just smarter now.