Day one of WTM Africa done and dusted and results for the #ARTA18 are in.
The sharks appeared as the mist started to disappear with our first shark one of the largest sharks we are seeing in the area at the moment, a male close to the size of the cage, that is to say approximately 4.3m in length. This male made a surprise attempt at our seal decoy and then unfortunately did not visit us again. Not long after though a smaller male showed up, one we have been seeing infrequently around the boat over the last few weeks with some distinct white marks on the left side towards his caudal fin. This small male was joined by another similar in size with a hook seen in the left side of the jaw. There is no trace of the line still attached and we hope that this hook will soon rust out. These sharks disappeared shortly after the next shark arrived, a large male just under 4.0m in length, this was “Sellendilloh” the current satellite tagged white shark in the bay. He was tagged in April 2012 in Gansbaai by American based research group Ocearch, who make the data accessable to the public on their tracking website. The last shark to arrive was yet again a large male, just on 4.0m in length, it appears the males are dominating the bay right now, something possibly to do with the La Nina weather patterns presently seen, as the presence of male sharks can be found to increase with cooler water temperatures. We also had a Short-tailed stingray gliding around the boat for the last cage, a nice chance for our guests to see another of our bays inhabitants.
The second trip of the day was off to a great start with a shark spotted only 10 minutes after the boat anchored. This shark was estimated at approximately 3.0m in length and whilst this is quite a large fish by any standards the next one was a massive in comparison as a 4.2m male came cruising into view. This male spent a bit of time investigating around the boat, with curious attempts on the bait and decoy lines. One more shark was seen to finish off the afternoon and it was one of our smaller males currently in the bay, under 3.0m in length, we classify him as a juvenile and whilst he may be smaller than the other sharks around today he can be quite active with feisty movements around the boat.