Westport, MA – Marine biologist Greg Skomal is performing a necropsy on a 13-foot great white shark carcass which washed ashore near the Rhode Island state line on Friday night. The carcass weighed an impressive 1,500 pounds. South Shore and Goosewing beaches were closed through Sunday while patrol boats searched the area for more remains or live predators.
The remains will be left where they were found once the necropsy is completed because the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries does not have the means to move an animal of that size. Officials are reportedly hoping the remains wash back into the ocean during high tide, Fox News reports.
The decision to close Cape Cod beaches appears to have been the right choice. The unusually high number of sightings in the region not only dampened the spirits of vacationers but hurt the local economy which typically thrives during summer months.
A shark-infested season in Massachusetts included sightings of great whites less than 20 feet from children building sandcastles on the shore. A Cape Cod vacationing family reportedly saw a great white dining on a seal nearly within arm’s length from their boat, the Daily Mail reports. A Ballston surfer had his leg bitten by a shark in July. Skomal saw three of the ocean monsters measuring up to 18 feet long close to the coastline, the Cape Cod Times reports.
Swimming restrictions for the rest of the season will reportedly be reviewed on an as needed basis, according to Fox News. Although Labor Weekend will soon be over, there is still plenty of warm weather left for locals to enjoy. Those who are still willing to go into the water are warmed to keep very aware of their surroundings and stay away, far away, from seals.
An increase in the seal population is drawing the bulk of the blame for the unwelcomed influx of sharp-toothed visitors. A significant population of grey seals in the region is reportedly attracting the giant predators close to Martha’s Vineyard. The recent beach closings have drawn countless references to the 1975 cult classic movie, Jaws, which was filmed in area.