As Big Sharks Move North, What Can You Do To Protect Yourself?
Granted, big sharks in Maine haven't become a problem yet, but it could be only a matter of time as the ocean waters warm. What can you do to protect yourself? Glad you asked.
Lifeguards in Cape Cod will now use flags attached to their stands that show a great white when sharks are spotted in the area, and university researchers in North Carolina are testing drones that could give also give swimmers a heads up!
Seals are the main food for big sharks, so it's best to stay away from them while on or in the water, because you never know what's underneath and tracking them down. The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy in Massachusetts can offer you these words of advice:
- Do not swim near seals
- Swim close to shore, where your feet can touch the bottom
- Swim, paddle, kayak, and surf in groups
- Do not swim alone in the ocean at dawn or dusk
- Avoid isolation
- Limit splashing and do not wear shiny jewelry
- Keep your distance (at least 150 feet) from seals, whether they are resting on land or are in the water. It is against the law to disturb them
- Adhere to all signage at beaches where seals are resting
- Keep pets leashed. Inquisitive dogs can startle resting seals, resulting in seal bites or scratches to you or your pet
- Follow instructions of lifeguards
- Become familiar with the beach flag warning system
- Take time to read signage at the beaches
While no one in Maine has been bitten yet by a Great White, it always a good idea to be aware. In the past few years, big sharks have been filmed in Passamaquoddy Bay and also off Burnt Porcupine Island, right off Bar Harbor! Check out both videos HERE!
By the way, according to the Associated Press, the Atlantic Great White Conservancy will be releasing an app this July that will monitor the movements of sharks that they have tagged along the Eastern seaboard! We'll let you know when they do!