After an online story at independent.com about a perceived uptick in shark bites along the California coast caused a hurricane of reader feedback, we at The Indy thought maybe we should take a deeper look at the toothy, finned beasts that live in our ocean and patrol the dark depths of our nightmares. What we found was much more than we bargained for-turns out that not only do sharks sometimes bite people around these parts, but they also played a fascinating role in the lives of Chumash, helped bankroll the development of the Santa Barbara waterfront, provided fodder for some of the most famous Fiesta food ever, occasionally bring young lovers together, and, perhaps most importantly, are on the receiving end of one of the media’s most oppressive smear campaigns. So grab a seat in the sand, relax, and before you take your next refreshing dip in the Pacific, enjoy Shark Week, Santa Barbara style.
• Sharks and Humans Getting to Know Each Other in the S.B. Channel – by Ethan Stewart
• Sharks and the Chumash – by Matt Kettmann
• World War II, Santa Barbara’s Waterfront, and 2,000 Shark Livers a Day – by Ethan Stewart and Nick Welsh
• Scary Shark, Tasty Lunch – by Catherine Meagher
• Shark Bite: A Love Story – by Drew Mackie
• Are Sharks Really the Eating Machines We’ve Made Them Out to Be? – by Ethan Stewart
• Sharks of the Channel – by Indy Staff