Importance of Biodiversity

What are the migration patterns of great white sharks?
Answered by John O'Sullivan
  • John O'Sullivan

    John O'Sullivan

  1. John O'Sullivan Curator of Field Operations, Monterey Bay Aquarium


    Right now, our research is not coming together like we'd like it to. While we can make sense of it, our young white sharks that we see in Southern California, that when we go in the field to collect them, to bring them back or to tag, are moving back and forth along the near shoreline, not venturing more than 11 to 15 miles off the beach through California, Southern California and Baja California. And they're moving back and forth.

    While the adult white sharks are only several locations, one in central California, one in Mexico, and they're moving out to the central Pacific to an area and out to Hawaii and back. But they're not mixing between the two. So our young of the year are doing a behavior that we're not seeing in the adults. That's OK, except it's much harder to piece together the management and how better to protect them. It's now quite clear that it's an international target for management of white sharks along the eastern Pacific.

    We've also seen that what our white sharks are doing is quite different from white sharks in Australia or in South Africa. When we talk about our animals, we need to keep it in perspective of animals along the eastern Pacific.

    More answers from John O'Sullivan »

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