December 1, 2014
- as seen by -Rhett Butler @Mongabay.com@mongabay
The channel between Dyer Island and Geyser Rock off the coast of South Africa is appropriately named “Shark Alley” for its high density of great white sharks. They come to the area to feed on cape fur seals, which are abundant there.
Shark sightings in this area are so predictable that a shark tourism industry has emerged, allowing locals to capitalize on people’s fascination with the apex predators. Scientists also frequent the area to conduct research on sharks or on southern right whales, which come of the region to give birth.
Despite the fearsome teeth, the shark pictured above isn’t on the attack. It’s probing a floating seal cutout made out of plastic. The dummy seal was coated in fish oil to make it more attractive to sharks. This approach enables scientists to get close enough to sharks to “tag” them with tracking devices in order to monitor their movements and behavior.
Canon 5D Mark ii