Baron Jupp Kerckerinck zur Borg
In all likelihood I was was the first in my family, dating back to 1264, to become hooked on sharks.
One of eight children, I was born in 1939 in Muenster and raised in Rinkerode/Germany. After schooling I spent one year in the United States studying as an exchange student and working on a farm in Minnesota.
Following a tour in the German Army with an honorable discharged as 2nd Lieutenant, I learned banking and soon after that I started my own advertising agency in Berlin and Duesseldorf. Following a 4-year stint as a racecar driver for Fiat Abarth and Alfa Romeo. For the next 20 years my focus was only terrestrial. In 1977 I got married and in 1978 I moved to the US. I started “Lucky Star Ranch”, a 2,000-acre ranch in the Thousand Islands region of upstate New York. Lucky Star Ranch operated as the first commercial deer farm in North America. Growing up in the country, where hunting and fishing was a normal part of our daily life, I was a conservation-minded hunter. However, I quickly lost interest in hunting when I began diving.
After several cage dives off Isla Guadalupe, in 2003, I became so intrigued by these wonderful creatures that I decided to spend my time learning, educating and talking to people about sharks and their senseless slaughter all over the world. Sharks have fascinated me ever since I went on my first dive with them. I started “Sharkprotect e.V.”, a German non-profit organization with this informational website. I even got elected President of The Shark Research Institute, a non-profit scientific research organization in New Jersey, USA, which conducts research and promotes the conservation of sharks.
As of today I have been on more than 230 dives, 150 of them with sharks. I have been diving with Caribbean reef sharks, blacktip sharks, silvertipsharks, nurse sharks, bull sharks, lemon sharks, hammerheads and my personal favorites: tiger sharks. One of my fondest memories and a great privelige for a guy with rather little diving experience, were my dives with white sharks and oceanic whitetips, outside the cage, in the open waters of the Pacific Ocean. To swim with those amazing animals in the “deep blue” was the most amazing feeling, and not in the least frightening”.