The proverb “there’s always a bigger fish” has never been so true. In 2019, shark expert Dr. Stephen Kajiura shared a once in a lifetime observation in this shark eat shark world.
His team had captured a Great Hammerhead in pursuit of a blacktip reef shark. (Spoiler alert, things did not end well for the blacktip.)
Save your seat at the February Social Night. Enjoy delicious snacks, beer, and wine during this in-person event! Then, join Dr. Kajiura on a Palm Beach Shark Dive.
Blacktip sharks aggregate by the thousands off southeast Florida every winter. They gather in nearshore waters. For over a decade, Dr. Kajiura and his team at Florida Atlantic University’s Shark Lab have studied sharks. They employed aerial surveys to track the distribution and movements of sharks.
They use airplanes and drones, and acoustic and satellite telemetry, to observe sharks as they overwinter along our coast of the Palm Beaches and migrate up the eastern seaboard.
DECLINING POPULATIONS IN A SHARK EAT SHARK WORLD
FAU’s shark experts have found that as ocean temperatures rise due to global warming, Blacktip sharks have shifted their distribution. By reaching warm water at higher latitudes, they no longer need to travel as far south. In the future, southeast Florida might actually be deprived of these seasonally important predators.
When Blacktip sharks visit South Florida in the winter, they become prey to Great Hammerhead sharks.
The Great Hammerhead shark is listed as an Endangered Species. Their populations are already in decline, primarily due to overfishing.
Learn how Dr. Kajiura and his team deploy satellite transmitters to follow the movements of these sharks. The data they collect will provide a better understanding of the Great Hammerhead’s movements, range, and habitat preferences.
Understand how this information is key to providing effective conservation of this important species.
Local waters deprived of sharks could have cascading effects throughout the marine ecosystem, particularly among higher level predators.
DIVE WITH A SHARK EXPERT
Then, join Dr. Kajiura on a Palm Beach Shark Dive! Book your spot on the February 26 afternoon charter and dive alongside this shark expert. Drift over Palm Beach’s beautiful reefs and wrecks in search of these elusive predators. During the surface interval, chat with Dr. Kajiura about the shark species you observed.
Palm Beach Shark Dives take place on deep (70′ – 90′) reefs and wrecks. Divers must be Advanced Open Water and Enriched Air Nitrox certified to participate on deep dives. Divers under age 14 are limited to shallow (40′ – 60′) charters.
Sharks need you! Pair your shark dive with a PADI AWARE Shark Conservation specialty class.
Learn why shark populations are declining. Find out what you can do to become a knowledgeable and passionate shark defender.
Help dispel misconceptions about these important marine animals.