Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Big predators and such.......

Mike Jericho's post about the Grizzly bear got me a-thinkin' about other large predators that still roam the earth. I've always been a big fan of Great White sharks, as they seem to have solved the evolutionary puzzle better than humans. Think about it. 70% of the earth's surface is water. Great Whites pretty much are at the top of the food chain in this environment, which again is a greater proportion of the surface of the planet than what we live in. Oh sure, we have nukes, and guns and stuff, and we do hunt sharks, but they have been around so much longer than humans, and "back in the day" they were still the shiite of the oceans like they are today, the biggest fossil so far would measure over 75 feet in length (in the immortal words of Roy Scheider, "I think we're gonna need a bigger boat"). And uh, take away our technology and put us in the ocean, and who wins? 'nuff said.

So after we nuke ourselves to oblivion, or screw up the 30% of remaining surface so bad that we can't live on it anymore, does anyone REALLY believe that sharks won't still be swimming around, eating, sleeping and making more baby sharks? Are we that egotistical to think that a creature that has survived millions of years of evolution won't be around for the next chapter after homo sapiens move on? That's just silly.

Of course, there is the possibility (as I mentioned in an earlier post) that we humans continue to progress and do manage to survive for milleniums to come. I mean hey, we are presently scraping rocks from another planet with a go-cart 80 million miles away, and sharks certainly aren't. Anything's possible. I just think that we get a little ahead of ourselves in thinking about how powerful a species humans are, and the Grizzly story was interesting commentary on this. This bear had killed other humans who had guns, the guns just weren't big enough. He finally ran across a human who knew that a .38 won't help you against a 1600 pound animal, so he brought a bigger gun along with him. Sharks are similar. You don't see many people "catching" great white sharks, because, well, it ain't easy. There's a reason for that. I believe it's called evolution. Survival of the fittest. Great White sharks are quite fit in this regard, and I believe that whether or not humans survive and progress along with evolution, sharks will still be around.

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