View Full Version : Dress like a seal or a fishing lure?

the texillectual
February 11th, 2004, 03:08 PM
Greetings all,

I'm training for the Shark Swim in July. I've decided to wear a wet suit. Most wet suits I've worn for scuba or windsurfing come in black. This makes one look like a seal. All the shark attack research I've read says that most attacks on humans occur because of mistaken identity. The logical conclusion is that one should wear bright colors that proclaim to sharks, "I am not a seal". But have you ever strolled around a fishing tackle shop? All the expensive lures are bright and loudly colored which seem to suggest fish like bright. Do any of you have an opinion on the question 'dark like a seal or bright like a lure?'.

Leonard Jansen
February 11th, 2004, 03:26 PM
Your chances of being attacked by a shark are 1 in 100,000,000.
Your chances of being killed by a shark are 1 in 300,000,000.
You are far more likely to be killed in a car accident getting to/from the race.
Wear whatever you want and drive carefully.

Here, however, is today's shark attack link:


February 11th, 2004, 03:44 PM
Having grown up on the coast I was always taught to stay out of schools of fish (and I suppose that would apply to groups / herds / what ever they are called of seals) to help to avoid mistaken idenity by a shark. In all my years living on the coast I never once heard of someone being attacked.

One question? Can sharks see color? It might not make any difference whether you are in all black or bright/neon colors... I thought for sharks it was more movement and smell than color...

Rob Copeland
February 11th, 2004, 04:16 PM
Elaine, a group of seals are either herds or pods. And I canít recall if sharks are attracted by color, but along with movement and smell they are attracted by silhouetted shapes (a surfer on a board with dangling arms and legs looks a lot like a big fat seal when looking from the bottom to the surface).

And a quick note on Leonardís shark attach story. The shark in question was reported to be a 20 inch monster. The story reported that the swimmer survived.

February 11th, 2004, 04:31 PM
The fish in question was a Wobbegong Shark:

It's pretty much a lock that this beastie won't be a bother at the Shark Swim, and if it is, just bring your car keys and a hose.

Damage Inc
February 17th, 2004, 07:26 PM
Shark - Shmark
If a shark attack occurs you only have to swim faster than the person between you and the shark.

I swam it last year and loved it. Im already signed up for this year.
Good Luck:D

February 18th, 2004, 12:32 AM
I thought shark have a rather poor eyesight, and a very keen sense of smell.
I'd be more worried of smelling like a seal than looking like one.

Has there ever been a shark attack during an organized swim anyway? I thought they happen more often when a lone swimmer bumps into a shark, rather than a shark actually hunting down a swimmer?

February 20th, 2004, 10:05 AM
From what I understand it is rare for a shark in that bay. They make jokes about it at the swim. Besides, there's plenty of fish food already there. It's the water that you have to watch out for! (I've swam it twice).

clyde hedlund
February 27th, 2004, 05:51 PM
I avoid wearing anything colored yellow in the ocean. I try to wear black and white striped suits (when available) too. And gals, by all means stay out of the water, if it is your time of the month.

February 29th, 2004, 11:07 AM
Yellow is best avoided though it can make you stand out..Good question can sharks see colors.. I remember hearing to avoid yellow wetsuits because sharks think they taste just like chicken!

February 29th, 2004, 11:14 AM
I forgot to say that the thread message about looking like a seal or a lure Last year a lady in California was swimming with seals and she was attacked by a shark and killed. She went swimming just about every day and liked to swim with the packs of seals (not Navy SEALS) she was wearing a black wetsuit. However lifeguards
said that the real danger was being in the pack of seals not so much being out there swimming or wearing the black wetsuit. Around Monteray Ca. I think..try a google search for the full story.

March 8th, 2004, 07:25 PM
The woman to who you refer was a swimmer at Avila Beach, north of Santa Barbara and south of San Luis Obispo. She wore a wetsuit and swam with a pack of seals. It is a tragedy, of course, but does not really have any relevance to any discussion about swimming in the bay in a pack swim.

Incidentally, a group of lifeguards at the beach for a competition raced into the water to attempt a rescue apparently without hesitation.

A link to a news story about the incident is: http://www.seasabres.com/%5CSafty-education%5CEducation%5CSharks%5Calviashark.htm

March 8th, 2004, 09:04 PM
Yes I read about the life guards when I first saw the story last year and I thought they were very couragous to go to her aid so fast.

Tom Ellison
May 11th, 2004, 01:48 PM
While swimming the Golden Gate Bride swims twice....I always thought the swimmers wearing wet suit were in danger....Both my son and I wore the smallest Speedo suits we could fit into...