• Shark cage diving in Gansbaai, South Africa with Marine Dynamics. Experience the exceptional and come face to face with a great white shark! 

  • The exact world record white shark is a contested issue, but chances are it is between 6-7m. In Gansbaai, the largest white shark ever caught was at Danger Point and measured up to 5.9m.

  • If you see a white shark in the water don’t panic. Chances are high that the shark has already detected you and isn’t interested. White shark attacks are normally associated with poor visibility, so avoid murky conditions.

  • White sharks have a unique system called a “counter current heat exchange”, which keeps their body  tempreture +/- 7C above the surrounding water temperature. 

  • All sharks have an incredibly unique system on the tip of their nose called the “ampillae of Lorenzini”. These are small pores filled with a gel that transmits the electrical currents in the water to the shark’s brain so that it can assess its environment.

  • White sharks give birth to live young (not eggs), and they give birth to 6-8 pups at one time. Pups are usually between 1.0-1.5m in length and are born with teeth.

  • Body language has been a well documented form of shark communication and has identified body arching, jaw gaping, and other postures as specific social tactics.


Sharkwatch SA Blog

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Gansbaai: Deceased White Shark, Cape Infanta

Author: Marine Dynamics (Shark Cage Diving Company)
Marine Dynamics is a Shark Cage Diving company based in Kleinbaai, a small harbour town, part of Gansbaai in the Western Cape of South Africa. This area is known as a hotspot for the Great White Shark and the best place in the world to see and dive with these iconic creatures in their natural environment.


On Saturday the 25th of November a deceased white shark was reported to the South African Shark Conservancy by Ichthyologist, Sarah Halse, from the Breede area. On Sunday the 26th, Dyer Island Conservation Trust’s white shark biologist, Alison Towner, retrieved the shark and brought it back to DICT’s Kleinbaai facility. The necropsy took place on Monday the 27th.

The white shark is a juvenile 2.8 m female. Her head was removed on the Sunday morning post mortem but luckily the team at Infanta were able to retrieve it. The shark had no tag but she may be recognised by researchers using photographs of her dorsal fin and tail patterns.

"There are no obvious sign of Orca bites and she has her liver intact" said Towner. “The shark does have a fresh hook with steel trace lodged in her jaw and a gaff mark on the upper caudal lobe. We suspect, similar to the last Mossel Bay white shark mortality she likely fought with an angler resulting in her death."

Special thanks to everyone that helped retrieve the shark, in particular, Altus De Witt, Attie Louw, Chris Louw, Oliver Von Hasseln, Katie Von Hasseln, Jakes Lord, Sarah Halse, Jack Hanekom, Mike Midgley Fraser Nxumalo & Daniel Lightley


The shark necropsy began at 10am allowing scientists from Hermanus and Cape Town time to arrive. It was led by Alison Towner and Kelly Baker, white shark biologists from the Dyer Island Conservation Trust and Marine Dynamics.

Although the shark had a fishing hook and gaff mark to the tail, the gear size was considered too small to be targeting the shark directly. If it was the cause of death, it is difficult to confirm without evidence of the fight and fresh blood samples. White sharks can readily die from stress when hooked and fought, their hormone and electrolyte levels rise to lethal levels quickly as seen in Mossel bay back in May 2017.  The female shark had remnants of a common dolphin inside her stomach, its skull and vertebrae. This fascinated the team of biologists which learn new information at each necropsy event. Her liver was clean and weighed nearly 30kg which is considered an indicator of good health.

"This is the seventh white shark retrieval/necropsy I have participated in this year" said Alison Towner. "We cannot keep losing white sharks at this rate in South Africa. Orcas made a huge impact this year, but longliners, poaching and careless fishing practice are also a very real threat to an already vulnerable and pressurised white shark population. Removal of white sharks effects the entire ecological composition along our coasts, which we are already beginning to see."

A timeline of deceased Great White Sharks found around the Gansbaai and Struisbaai area, due to Orca predations can be found here and here

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