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Bloodbath: Great White Fever Comes to Cape Cod!

Derek Rielly

by Derek Rielly

Terror in New England as Great White numbers soar!

What travellers Great Whites are. After establishing buoyant new colonies in Western Australia and around Ballina on Australia’s east coast, as well as in San Clemente ninety clicks south of LA, the Great White has now made a show of its arrival in New England.

Over the past few days around Cape Cod, a fisherman has filmed a breaching White, a SUP pilot was attacked in three feet of water and two surfers “feared for their lives” and the ocean was tinted a gorgeous red when a Great White hit a seal twenty metres off the beach.

Watch the breaching White here (and read the Boston Globe’s account of the event here.) The skipper Hap Farrell says “This has happened to seven or eight other boats in the last two to three weeks. I just happened to catch it on video.”

The panic as a White hits a seal here. (Nisi Schlanger, who was surfing for the first time, said, “I felt like the shark’s gonna pull me in from my legs or something.  “People [were] yelling, ‘Get out the water! Get out the water!’ I thought I was dead.” He said there was “blood everywhere” as the shark ate the seal.)

And read about the son of a bitch on an SUP who was hit in shin-deep water, here. 

In response to the sudden activity, the usual calls for a cull have been thrown out. As reported by the New York Post:

A shark attack on a seal in Cape Cod has prompted a call for a controversial system that would hook and kill great whites.

Ron Beaty, commissioner for Barnstable County, believes the “shark hazard mitigation strategy” will help protect swimmers from potential shark attacks, the Boston Herald reported Wednesday.

“This shark, that attack that got videotaped off Nauset, that was very close to shore and very easily could have been a small child and not a seal,” Beaty said. “It’s very easy for these sharks to mistake a person for a seal. They’re just looking for something to eat. God forbid it’s somebody’s child, and by that time, it’s too late. We can’t wait for that.”

Under Beaty’s proposal, which he said has worked in South Africa and Australia, baited drum lines would be set up along popular beaches. Great whites that are found hooked would be shot to death, their bodies tossed out at sea.

Do you like the idea of Great White bodies being tossed out at sea? Or does it make you so mad you feel like going straight to Facebook and creating a page about it?

My favourite quote re: these events goes to the scientist Gregory Skomal who told the Boston Herald: “When you have overlap with humans, you do get the potential for these interactions, you know, a shark biting a person.”