Last year, two baby dolphins, two peacocks and a baby shark were killed after people tried to get a selfie with them.
And that's not counting the various seals, whale sharks and other animals that managed to survive the perennial human quest for selfies. The practice is dangerous, selfish and flat-out cruel, but people still don’t seem to get it.
The latest story began as these stories always do: with a woman grabbing a baby shark from the ocean to get a picture with it. But this story has a (slightly) happier ending.
In early February, a woman on Brazil’s Fernando de Noronha archipelago in Brazil attempted to snatch a shark pup right out of the ocean. She wanted her friend to take a photo of her holding the thrashing baby animal.
But this pup had other plans. It bit the woman and struggled so hard that the woman’s friend stepped in to stop the biting. A minute into the video, a bystander asks if the woman is a biologist. Needless to say, she is not — and, thankfully for sharks everywhere, never will be.
The woman, her friend and the baby shark all survived.
A full video of the encounter was posted to YouTube by Don O’Van on February 6, 2017, titled “Tourist gets bitten while trying to grab a juvenile shark.”
In general, the commenters sided with the shark. “TEAM SHARK!” wrote YouTube user savvy k. “WHAT IF YOU DONT GRAB A BLOODY SHARK IN THE FIRST PLACE?” agreed user Lexus Gaming.
But while the baby shark swam free, the woman now faces a $6,400 fine from the Brazilian government and four stitches in her right hand, 9 News reports. The archipelago is a de facto animal sanctuary, and any mishandling or harassment of the wildlife there will be strictly punished.
Learn about how you can help vulnerable marine animals by signing up with Oceana.