Sharks in Algoa Bay

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Smooth Hammerhead: Although hammerheads are the most frequently sighted species of shark during our cruises in the Bay, they are very difficult to spot. Usually the only thing that gives their position away is the very tips of their dorsal and tails fins barely breaking the surface of the water. It is therefore much easier to spot this species on a day with little to no wind. When there is no wind we can slowly maneuver the boat onto one side of the shark and move parallel with the animal quietly without causing a disturbance. We have however been lucky in rough sea conditions with a few sightings where a hammerhead just happened to swim close to our boat. Sadly, due to unregulated demersal long-line fishing for sharks, this species is now critically endangered and are becoming harder to find in South African Waters.

 

Great White: Algoa Bay is home to a healthy population of great white sharks. We have reason to believe that Great White sharks are breeding either in Algoa Bay or nearby as we have seen a large number of juvenile sharks over the past few years. The majority of these juveniles were sighted close to shore off Coega harbour. The adult Great Whites hang around the Bird Island group, and for good reason. Black Rocks at bird island is home to a large colony of cape fur seals, a preferred meal for adult white sharks. Much like the hammerheads, one must keep a look out for the dorsal fin breaking the surface of the water in calm conditions.

 

Spotted Ragged-tooth: Although rarely seen from a boat, spotted ragged-tooth sharks are one of the most abundant and iconic species in Algoa Bay. They thrive on the numerous shallow reef systems in the Bay. It is usually only under special circumstances that we sight this species on the surface. For example: when a fishing vessel dumps its catch of sardines and they float dead on the surface. This is a fascinating species to observe in the wild, and we would highly recommend a scuba dive with these large yet not aggressive predators. For those that are interested we can arrange a dive for you with a local expert dive company.

 

Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias)Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias)
Smooth Hammerhead Shark (Sphyrna zygaena)Smooth Hammerhead Shark (Sphyrna zygaena)
Spotted Ragged-Tooth Shark (Carcharius taurus)Spotted Ragged-Tooth Shark (Carcharius taurus)
CommonThresher Shark (Alopias vulpinus)CommonThresher Shark (Alopias vulpinus)

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