are out in full force off the East Coast and around the Sunshine State just as return to this summer.
swimming near a fishing line off the coast of Grayton Beach State Park Thursday, and officials in Volusia County responded to separate incidents Monday.
Farther north up the coastline, photos showed a dolphinthat had likely been mauled by a shark and near , a juvenile great white shark was – though it was not the first to be detected in the area.
As these marine apex predators move through the region, residents are taking note and local governments are taking precautions.
announced last month that its state beaches and coastal parks were used in the nearby New England state of to warn residents of the presence of sharks.
The Pine Tree State saw its first documented fatal shark attackand Massachusetts’ has since the species was designated as and as .
A 2018 white shark attack at Massachusetts’ Newcomb Hollow Beach thatmarked the .
Therecorded a total of 57 unprovoked shark bites on humans last year.
Although shark attacks around the world, there were 10 unprovoked bites resulting in deaths – making it the deadliest year for such attacks since 2013.
While shark sightings and detections have increased on the East Coast and in the area, the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy (AWSC) notesthat “stock status remains uncertain.”
The AWSC works in collaboration with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries to tag and track white sharks, after which data are shared with safety officials and the public.
“Before gaining federal protection in the late ‘
Researchers for the conservancylast month that while data from eight years ago showed there were detected along Cape Cod, in 2020 the group in the region – although there were more acoustic transmitters deployed to aid in the search.
In 2019, representatives ofsaid they had tagged more sharks on the Cape than ever before.
The most detections,, have been in August over the last four years. Shark season extends through the end of October.
, a shark-tracking organization, has reported that several great white sharks have been spotted around beaches in New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts, telling the that there are “thousands” of sharks on the East Coast right now.
“It wasn’t until the hunting and killing of seals was outlawed in Massachusetts in the 1960s and in the entire country in 1972, via the Marine Mammal Protection Act, that seals began to repopulate the region,” Wigren said. “With the resurgence of seal numbers, sharks have returned to nearshore waters off the coast of MA in search of a steady food supply.”
Wigren advises that people who choose to enter the water be aware of the presence of white sharks in addition to the.
She advises that humans take stock of the fact that sharks hunt for seals in shallow water, avoid murky or low-visibility water, swim in groups and close to shore, limit splashing and adhere to signage and instructions from lifeguards.
“It’s important for beachgoers to be aware of their surroundings and pay attention to signs, flags and safety guidelines,” she concluded.
To the West, juvenile great white sightings along the California coastline have also increased.
According to theof Del Mar City Hall’s Del Mar Weekly, Chris Lowe told local officials that new data showed the numbers of white sharks have been dramatically increasing over the past decade.
A similar study recentlyfound that between 2011 and 2018, great white shark numbers in Pacific waters had risen.
Researchers from, the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Hatfield Marine Science Center partnered and completed more than 2,500 hours of observation.
They– a figure up from a 2011 three-year study that found just 219 sharks.
Their research could indicate that measures to protect the species are working.
That said,, white sharks are threatened by overfishing and poaching.
“It’s hard to estimate how many white sharks are in our, as they are relatively rare. Research shows that protections for sharks have likely improved their numbers, particularly in the Northwest Atlantic,” .
Notably, NOAA says there is “currently no evidence that sharks are spending more time near shore as a result of warming waters,” although thethe impact of is heating up ocean waters, like .
Earlier this week,that the agencies had found that Earth’s energy imbalance approximately doubled from 2005 to 2019, examining satellite measurements and data from NOAA buoys.
In an emailed statement to Fox News, renowned oceanographer, marine biologist and Mission Blue President and Chairman Sylvia Earle called for action.
“We need to convey a sense of urgency because the world is changing quickly. The next ten years is likely to be the most important time in the next 10,000 years,” she said. “We have options that we are going to lose within ten years unless we take action now. Every day, options close. Take care of the ocean as if your life depends on it because it does.”