Second great white shark sighting in False Bay

Posted by Elise Kirsten on 14 January 2020

A 4m great white shark was spotted off Macassar beach this past weekend by Dr. Alison Kock during an aerial survey of False Bay for SANParks.

False Bay has been known in the past for its great white shark activity and spectacular images of these sharks breaching as they launch an attack on seals from below at speeds of up to 40kph have been shared worldwide.

However, in 2019 there were no confirmed reports of great whites in the bay and there were only 50 confirmed sightings by shark spotters over the 2018 spring and summer season (down from an average of 205 annual sightings according to the City of Cape Town). One theory for the disappearance of these apex predators was that orcas were driving the great whites away, however, another theory is that the sharks’ food supply has been dwindling.

Now, there have been two sightings of great whites within a week and Shark Spotters chief executive Sarah Waries speaking to IOL said, ‘Last Tuesday, one was recorded at Seal Island by Chris Fallows of Apex Shark Expeditions, and then on Saturday SANParks marine biologist Alison Kock did an aerial survey and also saw one white shark off Macassar about the same size.’

‘So there have been two shark sightings, possibly the same shark, in False Bay in a week.’

‘We’ve had some bronze whaler shark sightings since then, but we haven’t had any confirmed white sightings on any Shark Spotters’ beaches,’ she concluded.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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