Can magnets repel sharks?

When you’re enjoying yourself in (or on) the water, the last thing you want to worry about is an ominous fin swimming your way. Shark attacks rank among one of the top fears all over the world, no thanks to the film Jaws. If you’re a person who loves to surf, swim, snorkel, scuba, or paddle in the ocean, the thought of a shark attack has most likely gone through your mind. If there was a way to protect yourself with a shark repellent bracelet, would you do it for the peace of mind?

In today’s innovative shark repellent market, there are so many choices to protect yourself with. Shark repellent technology is a booming market with a variety of options from magnets to electricity to products scented with shark corpses to repel sharks. The debate about which technology works best is still up for discussion. Would you believe that a magnet could work as a shark repellent?

Many people believe that magnets can work as a shark repellent, but the introduction of the electronic shark repellent band is changing the market. Let’s dive in to see how magnets work to repel sharks and you can decide which protection you would want in the wide-open ocean—magnetized or electronic.

How do magnetic shark repellents work?

Sharks have a “sixth sense”, a way to feel electrical currents with sensory pores on the front of their heads, called the ampullae of Lorenzini. When prey tries to escape a shark, it darts away quickly, and these sporadic muscle contractions give off an electrical current that the sharks can sense so they can find their next meal. When humans swim, surf, paddle, snorkel, or scuba, they’re constantly using their muscles and sending out these attractive electrical currents. Logically, if you can find a way to disrupt the shark’s sensory pores, the sharks won’t sense an object or will be repelled from the unfamiliar sensation of that interruption.

With magnets, a small electrical field is created when touching saltwater. The ocean is filled with saltwater, an ionic solution, that can act as an electrical conductor due to particles with electrons that are unpaired. When a charged metal—a magnet—interacts with saltwater, it creates a weak electrical field. It is believed that this electrical field can act as a shark repellent by disrupting the normal electric field, which would confuse a shark and take away its sixth sense. The hope is that when a shark senses the electric field, it will get spooked and swim quickly in the other direction. In summary, magnets are thought to create an electrical field that will spook sharks and keep them swimming in the opposite direction.

The results of magnetic shark repellents

The smaller, wearable magnets that come in a shark repellent band are not strong enough to create a large electromagnetic field. In an article in Wired, a founder of SharkDefense “cautions that the magnets appear to have an effective range of only 10 inches…once you had the necessary 10 to 20 pounds of magnets all over your body, you’d sink. So, at a cost of about $5 a magnet, you could theoretically turn yourself into a $400 shark-safe anchor at the bottom of the sea.” Sounds like you would need to have multiple strong magnets all over your body to create a significant enough electrical field to keep sharks away. That doesn’t sound like a relaxing time in the ocean.

In the study published by PeerJ and the National Institute of Health, Effectiveness of five personal shark-bite deterrents for surfers, the authors compared 2 magnetic shark repellent bands, 2 electrical shark repellent bracelets, and one scent-based shark repellent. The study put out some bait and paired that with each technology one at a time, taking meticulous notes for accurate results. The study showed that the magnetic options had little to no effect on sharks taking the bait that was set up for testing (from 96% to 94%). The only option that showed a significant difference was an electronic shark repellent band, taking the percentage of bites on the bait from 96% to an astounding 40%. This shows that magnets are really not the best choice for staying safe from sharks in the ocean. Electronic shark repellent devices are tested and proven to be incredibly effective at keeping sharks away.

There’s very little evidence to show that magnetic shark repellents are effective. In fact, a young surfer from Florida, Zack Davis, was attacked and bitten by a five-foot-long blacktip shark the first day he was trying out his new Christmas gift—a magnetic shark repellent bracelet. The shark bit and held on for 2-3 seconds before letting go. After 42 stitches, his mother rightfully requested a refund from the company who made the magnetic shark repellent band.

Magnets may not be the best choice for keeping sharks at bay while recreating in the ocean, but it could have promising effects on the global shark population—20% of which are on the endangered list due to accidental bycatch of millions of sharks a year by commercial fisherman. It has been found that when commercial fisherman use large magnets on the bottom of their boats, they can attract and catch up to 30% less sharks, which is a huge improvement. When it comes to magnetic shark repellent bracelet technology though, the results aren’t as convincing.

Why electronic shark repellents are more effective

While magnets might not provide the security and safety you’re looking for, there are other successful shark repellent band options on the market today. Instead of relying on weak electrical fields created through the interaction of magnets and saltwater, some companies have figured out a way to jump straight to creating a larger, safer electrical field that are proven to send sharks swimming. These shark repellent devices emit electricity and show promising results as an effective shark repellent.

The establisher of E-Shark Force spent more than 12 years innovating the E-Shark Force shark repellent, one of the most ground-breaking electronic shark repellent bands. As stated above, electronic shark repellent technology is tested and proven to be effective at keeping sharks away.

How does the E-Shark Force electronic shark repellent device work? When the unit (either a shark repellent band, surf leash, or shark repellent bracelet) hits the saltwater, it automatically turns on. When the unit is on, it releases an electrical current which keeps sharks from the “bump and bite” behavior they’re known for. When in the water, many people have noticed a decrease in shark activity around them and have found that the peace of mind is priceless. After using the shark repellent device and rinsing, it’s easily rechargeable. The electrical current doesn’t do any damage to sea life – just keeps sharks at a safe distance. A sleek design doesn’t hurt, either. E-Shark Force is widely becoming known as the best shark repellent band on the market and is already keeping people safe from sharks in the big blue ocean.

With options like the E-Shark Force shark repellent bracelet, it’s hard to justify investing money in another technology, like shark repelling magnets. If you want to feel the security of enjoying worry-free ocean activities, invest in an E-Shark Force shark repellent band today for you or as a great gift for any ocean lover you know.

2 Comments

  • It’s true when the device works properly.
    I bought one Eshark band after less than 2years is dead.
    So at this price can be more efficient.

    Serge,
    • Aloha Serge,
      We have made major updates and improvements to the Swim2 bands. We welcome you to try our updated products.
      Mahalo!
      E-Shark Force, Customer Service

      Rob Kron,
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