Surfers, bodyboarders and standup paddleboarders residing around the Southern California gem Santa Barbara were given a shocking warning, Sunday morning, as authorities issued an alarming note declaring that a monster 17-foot Great White Shark was skirting the coast off El Capitan and hungry.
Michael Domeier, Executive Director of the Marine Conservation Science Institute, breathlessly declared, “She is not your everyday Southern California juvenile; she’s a massive adult that you should avoid.”
Terror immediately rippled through the surf community, with those who had been out in the water sharing stories. One surfer, who had been maybe straddling a Channel Islands’ Twin Pin, responded that he had seen a dorsal fin in the water that very morning “as big as a traffic cone.”
Another, probably astride a Ryan Lovelace, swore he had seen an orca out in the water because it was much too big, in his mind’s eye, to be a shark.
Still a third searched for a silver lining, stating, “I’m more scared of the juvenile curious taste test than the adult who knows that we don’t have much meat on us.”
A classic blunder assuming children are less intelligent than grown-ups.
Domeier quickly splashed water on that theory, responding, “Juvenile white sharks eat fish, stingrays and other sharks. Adult white sharks eat seals, sea lions and porpoise. Adults are more likely to bite a person than a juvenile.”
Ageism goes both ways.
More as the story develops.