Sea animals and fish are frequently the victims of negative publicity. More often than not, browsing through wildlife documentary channels on television will reveal a disappointing trend. Many of the documentaries have names such as "Killer Squid" and "The Deadliest Octopus". No wonder some new divers are frightened by aquatic life!
Marine animal behavior can appear threatening to divers who do not understand the purpose behind the behavior. Many sea animals are completely docile but just "look scary," and some animals that appear friendly can actually be quite aggressive.
Almost all aquatic life injuries are caused by defensive behavior on the part of the animal. As I tell new divers, don't try to pull eels out of their holes, poke the lobsters, or attempt to ride the stingrays, and you should be just fine. Don't bother the fish and they won't bother you.
Click through the following pages to learn about some of the animals that divers commonly fear and to discover which are dangerous and which are not.