Q&A with "Everything Sharks" author Ruth A. Musgrave
What is your favorite thing about sharks?
There are 450-500 kinds of sharks and they come in different sizes, shapes, and lifestyles. Oh, and I think it’s astonishing that 10% of sharks are bioluminescent (glow-in-the-dark)!
What is one little known fact about sharks that might make people less afraid of them?
Most sharks are about the size of a baseball bat. Most sharks also live in the deep-sea, no where near people.
In NGK Everything Sharks there is a list of real and often odd things that are more likely to happen to you than being attacked by a shark. Things like…you are more likely to win American Idol or stub your toe! When did you first fall in love with sharks?
It became a never-ending fascination when I first heard about the tiny cookiecutter shark, and how it preys on whales and other sharks! (pg 29, 37) I loved it and had to know more. That lead to the realization that great whites and blue sharks are the exception, not the rule to sharks and their natural history.
They say dogs are a man’s best friend. Who is a shark’s best friend?
Kids, I hope. They can be the voice to protect sharks as enthusiastically as people protect whales and other ocean animals.
Tell us about Fintastic Friday! It sounds… fantastic???
Fintastic Friday: Giving sharks a Voice is a new, fun, and important holiday for kids. The purpose is to celebrate sharks. Part of the reason sharks populations are declining so rapidly and with so little fanfare is because they are portrayed as villains. The goal of Fintastic Friday is to change that view, to present sharks as they really are awesome and important predators that the oceans need. Everyone can celebrate in their own way. Maybe learn more about sharks by reading Everything Sharks, post a sign on your door, make a craft or even hold a “Sharks in the Park Rally” with friends or classmates. As the holiday grows in popularity so will the appreciation -- and then protection – of sharks.
The photos in this book are incredible. What’s your favorite photo in Everything Sharks?
Wow, that’s the hardest question. Every page has stunning photos and there many of sharks I’ve never seen photos of before. Every time I look at the book I find a new favorite. A couple of my favorites include the prickly shark (pg 14) and frilled shark (pg 37), because they are so unusual. I love the silly grin on the lemon shark (pg 44). It looks so cute and that’s a word one doesn’t often hear in the same sentence with a shark!