Hammerhead Shark Elias Cruises Just Off New Jersey Beach

Elias, a 100-pound hammerhead shark tracked by Ocearch researchers, has broken the surface once again as he cruises by the New Jersey shoreline, making his presence known just a few hundred feet of the coast of Lavallette.

According to Ocearch’s tracker, the shark popped up around Chadwick Beach on Saturday morning, signaling from a position less than a mile offshore at 6:13 a.m. Elias went on to be recorded roughly a half hour later off Osprey Lane in Mantoloking. By Sunday, the hammerhead had moved back out to sea, and was detected roughly four miles from shore at 7:22 a.m., near Belmar, as the Asbury Park Press notes.

On Monday morning, Elias was sighted just off Lavallette, coming within a few feet of the beach when he was detected at 8:06 a.m. Moments later, at 8:29, the shark was last recorded, having moved slightly away from the shallows.

Elias has traveled roughly 430 miles since he was tagged off Montauk, as the Inquisitr previously reported. Researchers affixed a satellite tag to the animal’s dorsal fin, which relays his position every time the hammerhead breaks the surface. Elias was tagged along with several other sharks as part of a no-kill tournament held last month, and fans can now follow the shark’s progress online, through the Ocearch website.

The non-profit group tags sharks of varying species in an effort to gather data useful for conservation efforts. Several of the great whites tracked by the organization have gone on to be celebrities in their own right, gathering massive online followings, as NJ.com notes. Mary Lee, a large female white shark first tagged off Cape Cod, found herself at the middle of a social media frenzy earlier in the year when she swam along the New Jersey coastline, traveling as far north as Long Island. She has since repaired to Georgia, where she has recently been tracked.

Following Elias’ capture by Dave Grime at the Carl Darenberg Memorial Shark’s Eye Tournament, researcher Dr. Greg Skomal noted that the shark’s tagging was a “milestone.” Though Ocearch has tracked several other species of hammerhead, Elias is one of the first smooth hammerhead sharks to ever carry a satellite transceiver.

[Image via Ocearch]