Shark Week: Meet TV Presenter & Conservationist James Glancy
James is a passionate wildlife conservationist and keen adventure sportsman. James has spent his life outdoors in wild and hostile places. As a child, James was taught to dive and swim with sharks by a former US Navy Seal who inspired him to join the British military. Over a 10 year military career, James was a Officer in the elite British Royal Marines and Special Boat Service. Since leaving the armed forces, James has returned to his childhood passion for wildlife and shark diving. He is now a Director of a conservation charity, Veterans 4 Wildlife, where he focuses on the preservation of African wildlife and combating the global trade in shark fins.
James is currently a host on Discovery Channel's Shark Week and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.
Thanks for sharing your shark story with us!
1. What is your favorite shark and why?
Blue sharks are my favorite because of their inquisitive nature and their iridescent blue tone which shimmers in the sunlight. Swimming with blue sharks can sometimes feel like being around playful labradors, they swim up close and some love to have their noses rubbed. Blue sharks are heavily overfished for their fins and meat around the world.
James with a blue shark in South Africa
2. What is one species of shark you would like to see on Shark Week?
I’d like to see more shows with the two biggest sharks, Whale and Basking sharks. Both are incredible animals that migrate high distances to feed on plankton. Both aggregate in large numbers, creating an incredible spectacle.
3. What is one thing you wish people knew about sharks?
Some sharks only live in fresh water rivers, such as the Ganges shark, yet all types of river sharks are critically endangered as a consequence of overfishing and pollution.
4. Can you tell us a little about your current work with sharks?
I have been swimming and diving with sharks since I was 13. Over the last two years I’ve been lucky to work on shark week, filming with Oceanic Whitetips in the Bahamas and Silky and reef sharks in Palau. I plan to make more shows educating people about sharks and particularly about the amazing work shark conservationists do around the world. I work for conservation charity Veterans For Wildlife, which currently trains rangers to protect animals on land, we are soon expanding into shark and marine life conservation.
5. What has been one of the coolest/most interesting things you have seen/learned working with sharks?
Spending two days in the water with Oceanic Whitetips I was able to witness the relationships that sharks have with each other. It was fascinating to see sharks swimming in pairs, where they the two clearly have a social interaction and bond with each other. Sharks have far greater depth to their relationships with each other than we currently understand.
James in Palua for Shark Week