Katharine the great white shark recently made headlines with her brief trip to Florida’s east coast, yet the famous predator has since gone silent, leaving fans to wonder just where her fin will next break the surface of the sea.
Arriving off Fernandina Beach late last month, Katharine embarked on a tour of the Space Coast that saw her traveling as far south as New Smyrna Beach, which she reached on January 30. Often signaling from just offshore, the white shark meandered along the coast, leading onlookers to wonder whether Katharine would repeat her course from last year, which took her into the Gulf of Mexico.
— Mike Watson (@MWatsonSurfline) February 11, 2015
Abruptly, Katharine headed north after her brief appearance at New Smyrna, next breaking the surface near the Florida-Georgia line on February 5. Another “ping” from later that day showed the white shark moving away from shore on a course that, if followed, would lead her to the continental shelf’s Blake Plateau, the domain of another, far larger great white named Mary Lee.
— OCEARCH (@OCEARCH) February 8, 2015
In the intervening days, no signal has been detected from Katharine’s transmitter. Her tag only sends out her position when the shark breaks the surface, so Katharine may simply be biding her time in the depths of the lower Eastern Seaboard. Still, according to Ocearch founder Chris Fischer, Katharine‘s propensity for surfacing is the element that sets her apart from the other sharks.
“Katharine stands out because she constantly comes up finning, which means she likes to spend a lot of time on or near the surface,” he said in a previous interview. “She is so coastal, almost living on the beaches, as well. It makes her somewhat of a media darling as she passes by. At the same time, she is giving us the most comprehensive look at her life.”
Recently, Katharine marked 10,000 miles of travel since she was tagged off Cape Cod late in 2013. While her absence from Ocearch’s tracker is nothing compared to the extended dives of some other sharks that the group monitors, Katharine’s uncharacteristic silence has led some of her fans to wonder if the white shark has turned south once again or if she may be hiding in Mary Lee’s territory.
— Dani (@ThatRealDani) February 11, 2015
As Katharine’s tag remains silent, her most ardent fans can only wonder where the great white shark will next break through the waves.
[Image Via Twitter]