November 12, 2016
Looks Like Jameson The Shark Has Company: Four Great Whites Spotted Off Cape Cod

Researchers with the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy observed four great whites off Cape Cod shores on Tuesday, a week after a dramatic rescue saved one of the predators, named Jameson, making headlines worldwide.

The white sharks were spotted off Monomoy, according to WCVB, a well-known hotspot where the animals congregate. The four sharks ranged in size from 8- to 12-feet-long, according to the conservancy, making them young specimens, not yet fully mature. Several of the white sharks were photographed by the conservancy's spotter pilot, Wayne Davis, swimming just a few yards from the Chatham shore.

Last week, one of the local white sharks found itself in a precarious situation, stranded on a beach by a quickly retreating tide. Beachgoers kept the shark wet until rescuers arrived, and eventually dragged the shark back into the water. After researchers towed the shark through the sea to resuscitate it, the great white swam off under its own power, though Dr. Greg Skomal noted that it had only a 50 percent chance of surviving its ordeal. Later in the week, a receiver off Chatham picked up a signal from the shark, named Jameson by researchers, indicating that it had survived.

The White Shark Conservancy is currently engaged in the second summer of a five-year-long study of the local great white population, which gathers off the cape during warmer months. The sharks are drawn to the region by a burgeoning seal population, as the Inquisitr previously reported, and it has also been theorized that a nursery for young great whites exists nearby, off the New Jersey coastline. The conservancy's study aims to answer questions about not only how many sharks migrate to Massachusetts waters each year, but how many of the predators are repeat visitors.

While the summer white shark population appears to be arriving off the cape en masse, there have been some notable holdouts. Katharine, a white shark tagged by Ocearch off Cape Cod in 2013, was recently detected near the Outer Banks in North Carolina, moving out to sea. A reliable presence in Massachusetts, she surprised researchers by remaining near Cape Cod until late in the season last fall, finally leaving in December. Mary Lee, a famed white shark that made headlines when she swam north earlier this year, has also opted to remain south, swimming off the Georgia coastline, as the Savannah Morning News reports.Whether Mary Lee and Katharine elect to join their fellow great whites off Cape Cod in the coming weeks, the conservancy will continue documenting and tagging white sharks throughout the summer.

[Image: Atlantic White Shark Conservancy via Twitter]