One Shark’s Big Journey | God's World News
One Shark’s Big Journey
News Shorts
Posted: March 13, 2024
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    LeeBeth receives her tracking tag. (Chip Michalove via AP)
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    LeeBeth traveled farther west than any other tagged white shark. (Chip Michalove via AP)
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What do you think of when you imagine a great white shark? Sharp teeth? Beady eyes? Suspenseful music? These fish have scared swimmers from the sea for years. But now they need help.

LeeBeth is a 14-foot-long white shark. She has an important job. She wears a tracker. Scientists watch the path she swims. Through LeeBeth, they learn where white sharks go.

White sharks are also called “great whites.” A popular but scary 1970s movie made them especially famous. Movies can have a big effect on the world. If a shark bites a human, it’s usually an accident. But after that film, many folks thought of the toothy fish as monsters of the sea. That led to people killing more sharks. Their numbers shrank. In 1997, lawmakers put rules in place to protect white sharks.

It’s not all bad news. Seal populations have grown in the Atlantic Ocean. Sharks eat seals. More seals mean more shark food. But white sharks still face danger from overfishing.

The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy works to protect them. So far, the group has tagged 300 great whites. Other groups track thousands more. But LeeBeth stands out.

LeeBeth received her tracking device in December. Since then, she’s journeyed 2,000 miles. Her voyage made shark history. She swam into the Gulf of Mexico. LeeBeth went farther west than any other tracked shark.

Why is that important? If LeeBeth went west, other sharks might too. That part of the Gulf of Mexico might be important for sharks. That information will help people protect them.

“We don’t know how many white sharks travel that far west, but it’s a good indication they do,” says scientist Megan Winton.

God created His creatures for a purpose. And He gave humans the job of caring for them. (Genesis 1:28) Even the scary ones!