Privately-funded researchers are tracking a great white shark off Canada’s east coast province of Newfoundland and Labrador they have named Lydia. The group called Ocearch first caught and tagged the shark off the coast of Florida, posting a video of the event on line.
Chris Fischer, the founding chairman of Ocearch, said he was surprised to track the one tonne, 4.3-metre-long great white up to Newfoundland waters.
“We thought the sharks might take us north, and this is actually the first one to do that, so for me I was thrilled,” Fischer said.
Information on sharks lacking
Not much is known about great white sharks and Fischer hopes tracking travel patterns will help researchers learn more about them, and reduce the public’s fear of them.
While your average Newfoundlander might be surprised to learn there are great whites so close to home, Memorial University master’s student Ian Hamilton is not.
The waters off Newfoundland are rich in marine life, particularly seals which sharks probably find quite tasty. The area is within the range of the great whites and they have been seen before.
Hamilton’s advice to Newfoundlanders is “keep boating, keep swimming… Lydia offers no threat to anyone up here.”