All photographs are the original work of Nishan Perera, and cannot be used without the written consent of the photographer. Unauthorized use of images is a violation of intellectual property rights and may be subject to legal action.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Marvels of evolution!

Sharks are one of the great successes of evolution on earth. A basic design so good its remained unchanged for millions of years. Ruthlessly persecuted by humans due to a lack of understanding and indiscriminately slaughtered to satisfy the growing need of people craving shark fin soup these beautiful creatures are now a rare sight in most waters. Shark numbers in Sri Lanka have declined drastically and now they can only be seen in a few places around our coast. Black tip reef sharks such as this can still be seen in places such as Pigeon Island and Bar Reef, but like many other species their future remains uncertain. In his book "Reefs of Taprobane" Arthur C. Clarke states that in his first dive in Sri Lanka he got better pictures of sharks than in two years on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. A sharp contrast to the present day, where in most parts of Sri Lanka, seeing sharks is as rare as seeing a mermaid!


Earth Explorer said...

It shocking how we continue to exploit our oceans with no thought of the future. Imagine the uproar if we indiscriminately killed as many species of animals on land as we do in the sea. Its a case of "If I can't see the problem it doesn' exisit"

Nishan said...

Completely agree. Biggest problem is that the consumers dont care and demand more. How many of us stop to think if the seafood on our plate has been sustainably harvested? I find it ironic that we go on vacation to the beach, dive/snorkel and then go eat seafood. Its like going to a National Park on land and then having the same animals you saw served for your lunch.

Nishan said...

I recently saw an article in a local paper where the writer marvels at the beautiful reefs and marine life around Kalpitiya (in NW Sri Lanka) and then says how you can get any kind of seafood at the local fish market from regular fish to the more exotic sharks and manta rays. Talk about appalling travel writing!

Outdoor2some said...

We've seen baby blacktip reef sharks at Hikkaduwa, right at the beach. But never the adults. So sad. They are magnificent creatures.

Shiranthi Kodagoda Peiris said...

Awesome pics, Nishan! keep up
the good work