Discovery's Shark Week Back With a Bite
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 31, 2009 3:26 AM CDT

(Newser) – Just when you thought it was safe to go back to the Discovery Channel, Shark Week is back. The channel's wildly popular annual look at the predators returns next week with six new documentaries, including a look at the deadly 1916 shark attacks off New Jersey that inspired Jaws. Channel execs say they're trying to mix entertainment with a serious conservation message, USA Today reports.

The channel is running public service announcements calling for an end to the practice of killing sharks for their fins. Despite the "scare factor" of the fearsome predators, sharks killed just four people worldwide last year while 250,000 sharks are killed by people every day, half of them just for their fins, according to a biologist who serves as an adviser to the Discovery series.