GREENWICH, Conn. — Ocean researchers tracked a great white shark swimming through the Long Island Sound about a mile offshore from Greenwich, Connecticut, for the first time ever.
The shark research and tagging organization OCEARCH recorded the shark’s tracker ping in the sound on Monday.
The shark, a 9-foot, 8-inch fish weighing 530 pounds named Cabot, was first tagged by OCEARCH in 2018 off Nova Scotia and has traveled as far south as Florida, OCEARCH's founding chairman and expedition leader, Chris Fischer, told WABC-TV.
Fisher said it’s not necessarily unusual to find a great white in the sound.
“We were quite surprised to see this one so far west,” he said, and thinks Cabot was after bait fish.
OCEARCH has caught and tagged more than 400 wild sharks and other animals since 2012. The animals are caught from tenders using handlines and guided onto a lift on an OCEARCH research vessel, where scientists take samples and attach tags, such as SPOT, acoustic and accelerometers. The fish are then released back into the wild for monitoring and tracking.
The tagged sharks have helped researchers figure out migratory patterns, which has led to better conservation programs and other initiatives, OCEARCH officials said.
Since great whites have a predictable migratory pattern, generally heading north along the Eastern Seaboard in the spring and summer, and can travel up to 150 miles a day, Fischer expected Cabot to exit the sound and continue north, WABC reported, probably to the seal-rich hunting grounds off Cape Cod.