Shark Tales

Is this former reality TV star the next Cousteau or a corporate-sponsored hype machine?

February 04, 2015

"In 2011, National Geographic didn’t renew Shark Men for a fourth season, but the next year Fischer sold it to the History Channel, which renamed it Shark Wranglers. He headed to South Africa, teaming up with local biologists to tag 43 sharks. About a week into the expedition, Fischer and McBride suffered an ignominious first: they killed a shark, a 
15-foot female named Maya that left the platform lethargically and sank to the bottom. Shortly thereafter, their tagging permit was again suspended when a local activist group charged that a fatal shark attack some 60 miles from where Fischer and McBride had been working was due to the team’s chumming. Despite the drama—Maya’s demise and the loss of the permit were both featured prominently on Shark Wranglers—the show’s ratings faltered. 'I realized that I had to figure out a way to transcend TV,' Fischer says, 'before TV canceled us.'"

—From “The Last Hope of the Great White Shark?,” Abe Streep’s Outside feature about Chris Fischer, who's using his knack for capturing great whites (and corporate sponsors who pony up big bucks) to further shark research


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