"Jaws" has returned to Long Island! Over the past few weeks, there have been various great white shark sightings along the shores of this island east of New York City.
During an average year, it is very common for a small sand shark to appear in the region, but not great whites.
Over the past three weeks alone, there have been five reported shark attacks by the island, according to USA Today.
In Quogue Village — a beach town on the south shore — police "are cautioning swimmers and boaters in the area to be aware of this ongoing situation, and to keep distance to allow the Law Enforcement to monitor this event."
On Wednesday, the police got a call from a Southampton resident that a great white shark had washed up on the beach but it had gone back into the ocean before the police could secure it.
South Fork Natural History Museum and Nature Center, located in Bridgehampton on Long Island, has a shark research and education program and has been working closely with the police to track the situation. Museum director Frank Quevedo shared with USA Today that he believes the shark in Southampton was most likely a juvenile due to its small size.
Quevedo also said that the uptick in shark sightings is due to new conservation efforts in the area. Local legislation was put in place to limit the amount of menhaden fishing, but the new law has caused the menhaden to multiply more than ever before, increasing its population around Long Island. Menhaden is a common meal for great whites, and that is what is causing the uptick.
In addition to sharks, more whales and dolphins have appeared on Long Island due to the overpopulation of menhaden.
A Twitter, Inc TWTR account known as MA Sharks recently tweeted, “Amazing Sandtiger shark photo from Long Island. They luv menhaden.”
For now, it seems that Steven Spielberg’s Hollywood blockbuster “Jaws” may be coming to life, with area law enforcement and other agencies trying to make sure those who dare to go into the ocean to think twice about it.
And, all of this is just in time for Warner Bros Discovery Inc.'s WBD "Shark Week," beginning on July 24 on Discovery and Discovery+.
Photo: Courtesy of Brecht Bug on flickr
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