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  • 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.

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Sharkwatch SA Blog

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Marine Dynamics 2018 Great White shark sightings

Author: Kelly Baker (Biologist)

The first three months of 2018 have been like a seal trying to maneuver away from a hunting Great White shark, going one way before changing direction, trying to anticipate the next move without knowing, however as we all know...these things can be unpredictable!

The new year has brought with it some slow periods with a number of weeks lacking White shark sightings here in Gansbaai, however it has also seen some of the most memorable experiences and encounters we have had in over a year.

Whilst January and February were rocky months for us, March was fantastic, with all trips experience varying levels of White shark sightings, from our smallest observation of an approximate 1.5m shark to a rare encounter with an estimated 6.0m female specimen. We have documented some of our usual yearly visitors but have also gotten to know some others quite well over the last three months. Below we have outlined some of the most frequent visitors to our vessel Slashfin for the start of the year, both well known and some newer sharks too.

ID: Mini Nemo
Gender: Male
Size estimation: 3.4m
Last seen prior to 2018: December 2017

Identifiable marks: Mini Nemo is easily identified by the stunted right pectoral fin that has been documented since 2012 when we first named and started monitoring this shark. Over the years he has continued to grow nicely, with our team documenting this shark atleast 4 times a year visiting the bay, however the fin in question that has earnt him his name has stayed just as it always has been.

Additional information: A Dyer Island Conservation Trust and Marine Dynamics Iconic White shark.




ID: Pieter
Gender: Male
Size estimation: 3.5m
Last seen prior to 2018: December 2016

Identifiable marks: Pieter has sported many marks and scars over the time that we have known him. He was biopsied in 2015 and was also acoustically tagged by the DICT team in the same year and since then the mark at the site of biopsy has disappeared and the tag has fallen off. With varying marks over the years it is his dorsal fin that reveals his identity as our team is capable of identifying on sight straight away.

Additional information: A Dyer Island Conservation Trust and Marine Dynamics Iconic White shark.




ID: Bite and White
Gender: Female
Size estimation: 3.7m
Last seen prior to 2018: February 2016

Identifiable marks: This feisty female has some natural white pigmentation on the dorsal that we refer to as rosie. This is not seen in all White sharks, but will show up in some on the dorsal or caudal fin and each is unique in placement, size, shape and intensity. Hers is a small spot rosie on the left side of the dorsal fin and a slightly less prominent pigmentation to the leading edge as well. Furthermore, this female is sporting darkly pigmented scaring on the right side of her flank which looks much like it could be a healing bite from another shark.




ID: Clamp
Gender: Female
Size estimation: 3.7m
Last seen prior to 2018: May 2017

Identifiable marks: This female shark returned to the bay this year with some distinctive markings to the dorsal fin on both sides. She has some black pigmented scars right and left side of which the left side is more remarkable with an x-like scar close to the leading edge of the fin.



ID: Club Tail
Gender: Female
Size estimation: 3.8m
Last seen prior to 2018: November 2015

Identifiable marks: Club Tail gained her ID name from the lack of upper caudal lobe which has an L-like shape to it from where this section of the tail has at some point been taken off. She has been spotted in the bay in 2018 during the months of February, March and April and is identified immediately when she approaches the boat




ID: Mr Freckles
Gender: Male
Size estimation: 4.2m
Last seen prior to 2018: Unknown

Identifiable marks: One of the largest males we have recorded so far this year, this shark is quite clean for a shark of such a size in that he doesn't have to many marks or scars however his dorsal fin does display three very distinctive dark spots on the left side of the dorsal fin towards the trailing edge of this fin.

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