A great white shark nicknamed “Ironbound” has been tracked just 40 miles off the Maryland coast.
A tracker mounted on the adult white shark, which measured more than 10 feet long and weighed just under 1,200 pounds, “pinged” around 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Nov. 24, data from marine research nonprofit OCEARCH showed:
Scientists at OCEARCH first tagged the shark with a tracking device in the waters off West Ironbound Island, Nova Scotia, Canada, in October 2019. They’ve been tracking its movements ever since.
OCEARCH has been tagging sharks around the world since 2007. The data collected during that time has revealed that Nova Scotia is a major hot spot for great whites in the Northwest Atlantic, next to Cape Cod.
Each year, great white sharks in the Northwest Atlantic migrate south from the waters off Nova Scotia and Newfoundland to the warmer climates around the Carolinas, Georgia and Florida, where they spend the winter.
“Most, but not all, species of highly mobile sharks in the Northern Hemisphere migrate south in the winter following their food,” Gavin Naylor, director of the Florida Program for Shark Research, previously told me. News week.
OCEARCH is about to embark on its 44th white shark research expedition as these animals migrate to the southeastern United States, which will take place between November 28 and December 14.
Currently, the white sharks that OCEARCH tracks are distributed along the east coast of North America, with several collected off the coast of the Carolinas, according to their most recent tracking data.
“Some of our sharks, such as Cabot and Ulysses, are enjoying the last moments of their summer/fall foraging off Atlantic Canada, while others, such as Hali and Andromache, have begun their winter home off Florida,” said OCEARCH. in a Facebook post on Nov. 14.
Since it was first tagged with a tracking device in 2019, records indicate that Ironbound has traveled more than 26,200 miles, equivalent to about two-thirds of the Earth’s circumference.
During its travels, Ironbound has zigzagged up and down nearly the entire east coast of North America, from the waters of Nova Scotia to the Florida Keys.
Ironbound has been moving generally south since late October as it appears to be making its way into the southeastern United States.
The tracking tags OCEARCH use “ping” whenever the dorsal fin of the shark in question breaks the surface of the water. Whenever this happens, the device sends out a signal, allowing OCEARCH scientists to pinpoint its location.