A Day In The Life Of A Shark Expert

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68 sharks were sighted off Cape Cod last year, with 18 of them tagged. (Elisa Levy/Flickr)
68 sharks were sighted off Cape Cod last year, with 18 of them tagged. (Elisa Levy/Flickr)

Monday, officials rescued a great white shark that was stranded on Chatham's South Beach. The 7-foot juvenile male had beached itself trying to get a seagull snack.

It's one of several instances lately of sharks getting close to land. Since last month, eight people have been bitten by sharks along the North Carolina Coast, including two in one day. There have been other attacks up and down the east coast cast — though nationally, the number of shark attacks is only slightly above average for this time of year.

There haven't been any shark attacks in Massachusetts this year. Even so, the Duxbury Harbor master has installed a shark-detecting buoy off the coast of his town. Three more are being placed in the waters near Plymouth — and they've been deployed along Cape Cod for the past five years. The buoys can detect and track nearby sharks that have been tagged.


Gregory Skomal, program manager and senior marine fisheries biologist with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries. His research group tweets @A_WhiteShark.


NECN: Beached Great White Shark In Chatham, Mass. Led Back To Sea

  • According to the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy, the 7' male great white shark needed to be revived when he became stranded on South Beach.

The Boston Globe: Shark-Detecting Buoys Put In Place Off Duxbury, Plymouth Coasts

  • “We’re trying to get a sense of local movements of white sharks and their behaviors for the purpose of public safety,” said Gregory Skomal, a senior biologist with the state Division of Marine Fisheries. The receivers on the buoys detect sounds emitted by the transmitters on tagged sharks, Skomal said. The receivers will record the date and time when the shark swims by, he said, and scientists from the Division of Marine Fisheries will download information from the receiver every couple of weeks.

This segment aired on July 15, 2015.


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