A pigeon causes the horrible death of many people.

A shark saves the lives of several people.

Both of them did it the same way.

Both of them triggered great adventures across the seas.

Who wrote about the adventures they triggered?

Small hint

Although pigeons are usually a symbol of peace or harmlessness, and the sharks are a symbol of danger, and in the riddle it's ironically the opposite, the pigeon is still a single literal pigeon, and the shark is a single literal shark, no mere symbolism.

Large hint

They both delivered a message. Not figuratively, but a real message, written on real paper. They have no part in the story after this. Their only role in their respective stories is that they trigger the plot by delivering the message, and we never hear about them again.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ can you add another hint? $\endgroup$
    – A J
    Jun 24, 2016 at 11:05
  • $\begingroup$ I thought the "large hint" was more then enough. When I asked this riddle the first time, in a circle of acquaintances, they solved it very fast even without any hints. Maybe the visitors of this site are not that into more classical pieces of literature? $\endgroup$
    – vsz
    Jun 26, 2016 at 21:54
  • $\begingroup$ If nobody is getting the answer, you can add it. $\endgroup$
    – A J
    Jun 27, 2016 at 10:07

3 Answers 3


After some googling, I believe the answer is

Jules Verne.

In the book In Search of the Castaways, a message in a bottle (to be exact, three in different languages) was found in the body of a shark. The message triggered the search for the shipwrecked Captain Grant.

In Mathias Sandorf, an message carried by a pigeon was intercepted and decrypted to uncover a plot. Two of the three conspirators are quickly rounded up and killed, while the third manages to escape and plot his revenge.


I might be stretching what you mean by 'literal', but after googling, is it

Irwin Allen?


He wrote/directed the movie and TV series Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, which stars an admiral played by Walter Pidgeon, who indubitably causes the painful demise of many of the people who try to attack his submarine.


in the TV series, one of the main supporting officers is Chief Sharkey, who it appears served as backup often for the admiral and other crew members when things got dicey.

They did it the same way in that

They were both commanding officers?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ +1 Wow, just wow. But by literal, I meant the animal itself. $\endgroup$
    – vsz
    Jun 22, 2016 at 15:52

Boy, I'm probably reaching here, but nobody else has anything yet, so I'm going to go with

Michael Crichton

in that the pigeon is

a Velociraptor, with more and more evidence stacking up that birds and dinosaurs are closely linked, and they certainly caused horrible deaths of many

And the shark is

The monstrous deux ex machina in the water at the end of Jurassic World whose great timing bailed out the handful of humans.

They did it in the same way by

being natural predators.

Already a stretch, I'll acknowledge it's further complicated by the fact that

Crichton of course had nothing to do with this most recent movie, having been dead for 8 years now.


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