A great white shark has been tagged and released off the Jacksonville coast. Ocearch scientists caught the massive female shark on Sunday afternoon. The one-ton Florida shark was captured near the Mayport Naval Station.
Blood and tissues were taken from the great white shark before she was released. The Ocearch researchers dubbed the large lady, Lydia, Fox 29 WFLX reports. Four tracking devices now attached to the Jacksonville shark will log her ocean journey, The Florida Times-Union notes.
Undersea acoustic monitoring devices and satellites will chronicle the tagged and released great white shark. Genetic testing and analysis of the blood and tissue samples will play an integral role in shark population monitoring. Scientists will now be able to compare the number of sharks in the eastern and western Atlantic Ocean and off the African coast.
Ocearch found Chris Fischer had this to say about the shark release in Florida:
“This is a historic moment. We’re solving puzzle.”
The shark nealy 15-foot long great white was found in about 25 feet of water near the naval station. The crew on a research ship spotted the shark after a maneuvering through the jetties and heading back towards shore.
In January, a 3,500-pound great white shark was also found near the Florida sore. The shark found near a surf break along the Jacksonville Beach had been initially tagged along the Massachusetts coast.
Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries scientist Greg Skomal had this to say about great whites:
“These sharks have probably been doing this for eons. The sharks have been pretty much going undetected.”
Why several sharks have migrated to Northeast Florida remains unknown. Previous tracking statistics indicate that great whites can swim “great distances” in mere weeks.
Ocearch scientists hope that the monitoring equipment attached to Lydie will help shed light on the largely unknown habits and life cycle of great white sharks.
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