It sounded like another sequel to Jaws, yet this time it is fact, not fiction.
Ocearch.org, a marine life organization that has tagged and tracked a great white shark named after the explorer John Cabot, issued an advisory on Monday that the 9-foot-8-inch, 533-pound shark was spotted in the waters off the Greenwich coast.
— This article originally was published by GreenwichFreePress.com.
OCearch studies marine life in the U.S. and worldwide.
At approximately 10:50 am Monday, OCearch tweeted that Cabot had triggered their tracking system in Long Island Sound, in the water between Tod’s Point and Great Captains Island.
“Be advised! For the first time ever, we are tracking a white shark in the Long Island Sound.” @GWSharkCabot is just off the shore near Greenwich.”
Tracking by OCearch is done using GPS “ping” signals. The shark’s ping was logged around 9 a.m. Monday morning.
Greenwich Harbormaster Ian MacMillan confirmed that Cabot was spotted chasing seals in Greenwich Harbor.
MacMillan said his concern was for kite surfers. “When they hit, it could sound like a seal,” he said.
“A boater reported seeing a large fin,” he added. “Even porpoises don’t have that high a fin.”
MacMillan said that typically the great white shark travels between New Brunswick and Chesapeake Bay, yet this is the first time a great white has been located in Long Island Sound.
Greenwich resident David McPherson said he was unaware of the sighting of the shark Monday afternoon as he was paddle boarding around the perimeter of Greenwich Harbor.
“Truthfully, had we known about the great white, it wouldn’t have changed our decision to get out on the water,” McPherson said in an email to GreenwichFreePress.com.
“For all of the coverage this unique event is receiving, it is my hope that the shark’s visit says as much about the improved water quality, due greatly in part to organizations like CT Fund for the Environment/Save the Sound, than it does about large, scary things lurking in the deep.”
Coincidentally, there is a shark exhibit at Bruce Museum currently on display.
“Maybe that’s why the great white is here, just to pay homage to his ancestors,” MacMillan joked.
Eleanor Dabney is a member of the Greenwich High School class of 2019 and will be attending the US Naval Academy in the fall.