Sharks function as the white blood cells of the ocean ecosystem. They pick off the dead, dying, and weak leaving only the healthiest to reproduce. Without sharks our ocean ecosystem would collapse; the health and productivity of the fish that humans and other mammals eat would degrade to the point that our human health could also be jeopardized.
Million years of evolution
Sharks have shaped our marine ecosystems before dinosaurs walked the planet and even pre-exist trees. Reductions in large predatory sharks can result in cascading changes throughout the entire ecosystem which can have unforeseen and unintended consequences for an environment which, among other vital ecosystem services, ultimately produces over half the oxygen we breathe.
million sharks killed each year
Sharks face a number of threats worldwide, including a variety of human impacts in the form of bycatch and recreational trophy fishing but the number one contributor and the main driver of their decline is the demand for shark fin soup. This dish is a status symbol used to convey wealth in predominately Asian cultures, but practically every country with a coastline involved in the global trade of shark products which also includes shark meat, shark cartilage supplements, shark liver oil (squalene) in cosmetics, pet food, and shark skin. A staggering figure of 2-3 sharks are killed per second and at this rate, many populations will go extinct within our lifetimes.
of shark populations decimated
Survey counts and data collected on pelagic research dives open to the public with One Ocean Diving are consistent with the observed declines in shark populations around the world. Our data indicate population declines at state and federal water lines, with a particularly sharp decline in abundance of silky sharks which have practically disappeared from our surveys. Sharks are rapidly declining almost everywhere they are still found, from the open ocean, coastal areas, the Pacific, Mediterranean, Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and across predatory fish communities world wide. We are only beginning to fully understand the impact of these dramatic declines and the consequences they will have for future generations.
To view ongoing and past projects summary overall projects and involvement in global conservation and research efforts
We use our marine research to globally inspire conservation. We aim to help people better understand these pelagic animals, the importance they play in their marine ecosystem and the threats they face every day. The threats pelagic species face have no boundaries, because of their highly migratory life the need for international cooperation and protection is imperative! Our goal is to inspire people worldwide to use their voice to help conserve and protect these amazing animals!
The majority of our educational outreach occurs on our boat dives and through our social media accounts. Those combined have allowed us to reach a range of people across the world. We believe that first-hand experience is imperative in changing people's misconceptions about sharks, and being in the water with these animals helps facilitate a new appreciation and understanding. Learn more and click here for more on our educational outreach program.
Founded as a research program, One Ocean Diving has a number of different research studies currently in progress! Our ongoing correlation studies look at shark movements by species, gender, depth profile, and season. Baseline information for individual animals is recorded, and new sharks are added to our ID program. The Shark ID program significantly reduces the need for tagging to determine site fidelity and assists in accuracy of survey counts. Deep water camera systems (up to 500 feet) are deployed to study shark movements at every depth at survey sites. Click here to learn more!
Sharks are worth far more alive, and responsible shark ecotourism operations are becoming increasingly popular around the world. There is growing recognition of the ecological and economic importance of living sharks which generate substantial benefits from the protection of sharks. One Ocean Diving proudly supports the Hawaii Ecotourism Associationʻs principles of sustainable tourism.
"In the end we will conserve only what we love, we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught." -Baba Dioum
Ocean Ramsey is a shark and marine biologist, dive instructor, and competitive level freediver from Hawaii that has worked in the water with over 32 different species of sharks around the world. She has an extensive educational and professional background in marine biology and has worked in the field with a large number of marine animals focusing mostly on shark behavior and her masters research is the basis for the Hawaii based pelagic marine animal interaction program. Her primary life passion is her work in shark conservation, and she hopes that through shark awareness and educational programs, that support research and conservation efforts, that people will turn the general "JAWS" fear around and want to help protect and save these important animals before their small remaining populations are also wiped out. She works year round in Hawaii as well as abroad on a variety of international marine research and conservation programs utilizing all means at her disposal to raise awareness and #SaveTheOcean. Learn more about Ocean and her work by clicking the link below and following her on Instagram at @OceanRamsey.
Juan Oliphant is more than just an underwater photographer, his conservation efforts and understanding of shark behavior have made him a leading presence in his field. Juan's primary goal with his work is to create an initiative for a global perception change for one of the most misunderstood species on the planet; sharks.
He co-founded Water inspired and One Ocean Diving and uses his photography to help inspire others to care about the underwater world and marine life, especially sharks. Juan grew up with a fear of sharks like the majority of the people on the planet and surfers of his time seeing a shark was initially not something he ever thought he would want to see, but once he was able to put a mask and fins on and experience how incredible they really are his whole perception changed, his whole life changed, and now his is fighting daily to help save their lives. Check out his work by clicking the link below and follow him on Instagram @Juansharks.
You don't need to be a marine biologist to help #SaveTheOcean, there are countless ways to get involved and support conservation efforts. Attend our of our reef and beach cleanups on Oahu or organize your own through @OneOceanGlobal, organize an educational outreach event to engage the younger generation with fun activities and resources, reach out to businesses selling shark products with predrafted letters, shop for a cause and support brands that give back by donating a portion of the proceeds to conservation efforts like One Ocean Designs non-profit line or Xcel Water Inspired Collection, learn more about the issues by watching documentaries or tuning into our conservation blog, and start conversations with your friends and family to raise awareness.
Sign Up For a shark dive
Join us on a pelagic research dive and get an introduction to sharks from our team at One Ocean Diving.
Join One Ocean Global as an Ocean Conservation Ambassador
Make a Donation
Donate to our international non-profit to help support these iniatives