Well yes, of course there are sharks in the Philippines. Shark attacks do happen but they don’t seem as common here as they do in the waters of Florida and other more famous areas. I have no idea why, I could even be mistaken. I did some reasearch on this a few years back though and I found a site showing shark attacks around the world. There were many attacks in the USA and only one or two attacks on humans by sharks in the Philippines. However, these are reported attacks and there are probably more unreported attacks in the Philippines than in the USA.
Great White Sharks In The Philippines
Great Whites are in the seas of the Philippines and they do occasionally attack people. I have heard of no attacks by sharks in the Philippines during my more than three years living in the Philippines. Yesterday I asked Jessie if she had ever known anyone that had even seen a shark and she had not.
We went to the beach on Thursday, mostly just to get out of the house. We returned to our often visited watering hole at The Hide Away in barangay Odlot in Bogo City. Since it was a weekday there were few people there. Most of the time it was just she and I in the water. Her high school friend Sheila also joined us for the outing. The pictures in this article are all from our Thursday afternoon visit to the Hide Away in Bogo City.
They kept talking about sharks in the Philippines! I’m sitting there thinking two island girls and they are afraid of the sea? I pulled Jessie close and started heading into deeper waters. The water was calm on this visit unlike our other recent two visits. During our last two visits there was a typhoon in the Philippines and being in the sea was like being in a giant washing machine.
As I was headed out Jessie said there might be sharks. Now we were less than 20 yards from the beach! I decided to be a bit wicked and starting humming the theme song to Jaws. I noticed something projecting from the water just beyond the buoy protecting the resort from passing boats and said, “Look a shark’s fin.” This freaked Jessie out. She kept a close watch on it the entire time. As her friend Sheila approached us, Jessie pointed it out to her. Sheila’s eyes became looked like mini-moons as a look of concern came over her face. It did look a bit like a shark fin but it clearly wasn’t one. It was probably a coconut that had fallen into the sea.
Me, I’m more afraid of urchins and Jelly Fish. I also asked her if she knew people that had been stung by Jelly Fish or stepped on sea urchins. I already knew the answer. Her father got a bad jelly fish sting when he was younger and still bares the scars on his arm. She said her neighbor in Tacloban also had a bad sting on his arm. I was surprised that she had not encountered this more often. She’s mentioned several times people she knew that stepped on an urchin. Filipino are usually quick to say the proper treatment for which is to pee on it. She explained after a friend she was with stepped on one it stopped hurting. I suppose it is hard to argue with success.
Sharks In The Philippines are Not a Concern for Me
Now Jessie’s 12 year old son Jason seems to have no fear of sharks in the Philippines or the water itself. He’s in it seas of the Philippines every time he gets a chance. It seems a little odd to me that both she and her friend are so concerned about sharks. Maybe it was just the day, I’ve been in the water with Jessie many times and don’t recall sharks coming up before at least not in such a serious manner.
She reminded me that there the sharks are every where. She’s right of course, if there is an ocean there will be sharks. Most sharks in the Philippines are harmless to humans. I suspect my chances of being killed in a bus trip to Cebu City is far more likely than even seeing a shark much less being eaten by one.
I would love to learn how to scuba dive and go looking for shark, manta rays, lion fish and the highly venomous Sea Snake. There are lots of Sea Snakes in the Philippines and a lot in norther Cebu. They rarely bite humans. This happens the most when a fisherman accidentally catches them in their net. These snakes don’t bit humans unless provoked and from what I’ve learned you have to really work at it to get them to bite.
When in the seas of the Philippines or any other place in the world, you should remember you’ve left your environment and exercise some caution. However, being attacked by sharks in the Philippines is way down my list of concerns.
Filed under: Living In The Philippines
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