South Africa’s Marine Tourism Sector Shaken by Hundreds of Large White Sharks Disappear
Hundreds of large white sharks have mysteriously disappeared off the coast of South Africa. The sightings of large white sharks, which usually support the country’s shark diving tourism industry, have fallen over the past 18 months.
Between 2010 and 2016, the Shark Spotting Program, established to warn swimmers when the three-ton predator was near the coast, recorded an average of 205 per year in False Bay, the main water body off the coast of Cape Town at the southern tip of Africa. By 2018, that number will drop to 50, and so far this year no sharks have been seen.
Also not visible are other large white shark sightings from Seal Island, a small land 6 km offshore inhabited by many seals that are the staple food of this large white shark.
Dozens of tour companies in South Africa offer visitors the opportunity to sink into cages and see large white sharks and other marine life up close. The reason for the fall, as well as the possible influence on the ecosystem of the region, is still unknown by experts.
“Further supporting evidence of the absence of these large top predators is the absence of food marks or bite marks on the carcasses of whales that have been removed by the city from Fake Bay this year. We do not know how their absence from False Bay will affect the ecosystem. We also don’t know the cause of their disappearance. “Cape Town government officials said Wednesday (8/28) yesterday as reported by Thesun.co.uk.
Local media have speculated that the arrival of the orcas pods, which has been known for the rare opportunity to eat sharks, as well as overfishing of species eaten by sharks could be the reason for the disappearance of white sharks in the fall.
Large white sharks are usually found in coastal waters of all major oceans and are famous for their size which can grow up to six meters in length.
While the shark as a whole is less aggressive than is believed, the great white shark is one of the few species known to attack swimmers and surfers for no reason. They are one of the top 3 aggressive shark species, along with tiger sharks and bull sharks.
First, their size and strength means they can easily defeat humans in water. Second, they have sharp teeth designed to destroy their prey, which means that when they attack, the damage they cause can be very devastating.
Editor: Timo Shihepo