Sharks are the kings and queens of the sea. Unlike most fish, they don’t live in freshwater lakes or rivers. Sharks can be found in all the world’s oceans, from the cold Arctic all the way to islands near Antarctica. They live everywhere, from the shallow reefs and bays close to shore to the deepest parts of the ocean and the wide-open waters. There are more different types of sharks in warm, shallow waters near land. Tropical and temperates seas have the most variety, especially closer to surface and down to the edges of the underwater continents. Colder waters, really deep parts of the ocean (deeper than a mile or two), and areas far from land have fewer kinds of sharks. Sharks come in all shapes and sizes. There are tiny dwarf sharks as small as a ruler (15-19 cm) and giant whale sharks that can grow longer than a school bus (12.1 meters or more). They can also weigh anything from a few grams (like a penny) to many thousands of kilos (like a car).

Shark Awareness Day dives deeper than just admiring these magnificent creatures. It’s a global event that raises awareness of the critical threats they face and their vital role in maintaining healthy ocean ecosystems.