NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. (WPRI) — Four great white sharks have been detected during the early part of this year’s research, the Atlantic Shark Institute (ASI) announced Monday.
According to the ASI, all four sharks were detected off Block Island with an acoustic receiver array.
This brings their total white shark detections to 14 different individuals off Block Island since the study began in 2019.
“Interestingly, not one of the 14 sharks we’ve detected has come through a second season,” Jon Dodd, Executive Director of ASI, said.
Of the four sharks recently detected, the two largest were females. The ASI said one was a 12-foot female tagged in August of 2019 off Cape Cod, and the other was an 11-foot female tagged in 2021 in Canada.
“One of the great things about our growing receiver array is the ability to track these sharks more closely as they maneuver around Block Island and adjacent waters,” Dodd said.
The ASI has nine acoustic receivers around Block Island that allow researchers to detect any tagged shark that comes within approximately 1,000 yards of any of the receivers.
Each tagged shark has a unique code that is only associated with that shark, which is the reason the ASI can use that code to determine the size, sex, and tagging date of any shark that they detect.
Fewer than 300 white sharks have been tagged in the Northwest Atlantic using this technology.
“Each season we log more detections, more data, greater specificity on fine-scale movements and each one is adding significant value to this study and a greater understanding of this iconic species in RI waters,” Dodd said.