Great white sharks are swimming close to NYC coasts, trackers reveal

·2-min read
A Great White Shark is attracted by a lure on the ‘Shark Lady Adventure Tour’ on 19 October 2009 (Getty Images)
A Great White Shark is attracted by a lure on the ‘Shark Lady Adventure Tour’ on 19 October 2009 (Getty Images)

A huge number of great white sharks are lurking off the coasts of New York, New Jersey, and Cape Cod, trackers of the creatures have said.

Ocearch, a shark tracker that aims to help scientists collect previously unattainable ocean data has shown that a number of sharks are swimming in the east coast areas.

According to The New York Post, the company has tagged 70 sharks, only a small fraction of the species that continue to prowl in the ocean.

“There are thousands of them on the East Coast right now,” Chris Fischer, the founder of the Ocearch research foundation, told the Post.

A map on Ocearch’s website allows members of the public to track the sharks for themselves, with each fish having its own name and fact file.

"Right now the sharks are loading up on dog fish, seals, and blubber over the summer," Mr Fischer told the newspaper.

The sharks currently prowling near the coast of New York include Martha, a 7ft 184-pound female, Monomoy, a 6ft 7in male.

According to the Post, the tag for a 16ft 3,456-pound mammoth shark named Mary Lee stopped registering data in 2017, but she is thought to be in the New York area if still alive.

News of the sharks on the Atlantic coast comes as reports say that the population of Atlantic great white sharks around Massachusetts’ Cape Cod peninsula continues to increase.

The Independent reported this month that a total of 118 individual great white sharks were detected in 2020 near the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy in comparison to 11 in 2013.

In terms of shark attacks, experts continue to assure people that incidents are rare, but also advise people to employ vigilance and common sense when swimming in open waters.

“It doesn’t make sense to dress up like a seal and go out in the middle of the food chain,” Mr Fischer said.

According to the Florida museum’s yearly worldwide shark attack summary, both fatal and non-fatal shark bites are decreasing.

“The total number of unprovoked shark bites worldwide is extremely low, given the number of people participating in aquatic recreation each year,” the museum’s website says.

International Shark Attack File confirmed there had been 57 unprovoked shark bites and 13 shark related fatalities in 2020, 10 of which were confirmed to be unprovoked.

National Geographic previously reported that great whites only congregate in only a handful of places around the world and only recently have these hubs come to include the Eastern Seaboard.

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