‘Massive’ great white shark visits popular Santa Barbara surf spot
A researcher warned Friday that a 17-foot great white shark was cruising just off the coast of El Capitan State Beach near Santa Barbara.
“She's not your everyday teenager in Southern California; She's a massive adult to avoid, "said Michael Domeier, executive director of the Marine Conservation Science Institute, via Instagram.
The great white shark's name is Poe Girl, named by Keith Poe who tagged the shark in 2017 as part of an ongoing MCSI tagging and monitoring project.
Domeier's Instagram post aroused the interest of his many followers, including surfers who rode waves on El Capitan on Friday.
"No way! I was just out in the water and came in and told my friend that I thought I saw a shark and he sent me this post," wrote one follower. "I'm 99% sure that I just saw her dorsal fin about 50 meters behind the lineup. "
Another surfer claimed to have spotted a shark "with a dorsal fin the size of a traffic cone" and added, "The lonely other thing I thought it could be an orca because no dolphin can be that big."
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Another follower intervened: "I'm more afraid of the juvenile curious taste test than the adult who knows we don't have a lot of meat with us."
Domeier replied, “Juvenile great white sharks eat fish, stingrays and other sharks. Adult great white sharks eat seals, sea lions, and porpoises. Adults are more likely to bite a person than a teenager. "
However, it appears that every threat posed by Poe Girl has been somewhat mitigated. According to the app, Poe Girl was significantly further from the ocean by Saturday morning.
But of course that doesn't mean she won't turn around for another visit.
–Note: The public can follow the movements of Poe Girl and dozens of other tagged sharks through the MCSI's Expedition White Shark app.
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