Summer on Cape Cod brings traffic, tourists and Great White Sharks!
Dedicated to studying and protecting these imposing animals are the folks of the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy. Each year, they track the sharks' movements, and now they are encouraging the public to do the same with their Sharktivity app.
Earlier this month, the Conservancy detected the first three summer visitors to the waters off Cape Cod: “Omar” set off signals near Chatham on June 12; on June 9, “Turbo” was detected off Wellfleet; and on June 11, “Sandy,” triggered the group's detectors off Chatham.
No white sharks were spotted today, but three were detected recently by the shark buoy receivers - Turbo, Sandy, and Omar! Some of these data have been uploaded to Sharktivity - our free app. Download link in our bio and see where & when they pinged in. @massmarinefisheries #awarenessinspiresconservation
According to the state’s website, Great Whites typically begin appearing along the Massachusetts coastline as early as May and can be spotted as late as November.
A five year study of shark populations conducted by the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy found that there is a good reason for the increase in shark sightings off Cape Cod - a lot more sharks are visiting our beaches!
While sharks have always frequented Cape Cod thanks to its abundance of delicious seals, their numbers are on the rise according to the study, including a significant number of young sharks, which suggests the population will continue to grow.
The Conservancy does not wish to frighten potential beachgoers, especially since unprovoked shark attacks are very rare - the odds of being killed by a shark are 1 in 3,700,000, according to National Geographic.
They do, however, recommend swimmers take precautions, such as avoiding seals and limiting solo swimming especially at dawn and dusk when sharks are most active.
They also suggest downloading the Sharktivity app where users can report sightings and get mobile notifications when sharks are spotted at particular beaches.
H/T to Boston Magazine