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Old 04-20-2016, 11:35 PM
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NPR interviewed local shark researcher, Dr. Stephen M. Kajiura of FAU.

" Sharks, Sharks, Everywhere
By Luis Hernandez • 14 hours ago

There are literally tens of thousands of sharks that come down and spend the winter right off our beaches here in Southeast Florida. Add to that the fact that Florida beaches are very popular for tourists and locals. Those are the ingredients that have made Florida the world's leader in shark attacks.

Dr. Stephen M. Kajiura of the Elasmobranch Research Laboratory, Biological Sciences, Florida Atlantic University

Blacktip sharks are a medium sized shark. They’re maybe just about six feet long at the most. They are primarily fish eaters, and they will come down, spend the winter down here (South Florida) where the temperature is preferred. And then they'll follow that preferred temperature up the coast in the spring. So they migrate farther north and spend the summers off the Carolinas before coming back here again the next year.
Carcharhinus melanopterus: blacktip reef sharks are grey or brown on the dorsal area and white on the ventral. The tips of each of its fins are black with a lighter band lying just below the black
Credit https://bioweb.uwlax.edu/bio203/f201...adaptation.htm / Organismal Biology at University of Wisconsin - La Crosse

I'd imagine as a researcher that you spend a lot of your time up close with underwater species. Why did you want to get this bird's eye view of blacktip sharks?

Well, for many years I would get inquiries from the local media saying that their news helicopters had seen large numbers of the sharks (from above). I told them all it is is a migration that happens every year. No big deal. But when I had the opportunity to do the flying myself and see the animals I said this is really ripe for exploration. And the best way to address this, to cover a large area of the coast, is to do it by airplane and get this bird's eye view. And that's really the best way to count the numbers of sharks and see how many there are and when they're here. And that's what we started back in 2011.

And besides getting the count, what else do you learn from that vantage point?"

Continued at: http://wlrn.org/post/sharks-sharks-everywhere

PLUS link to in-depth radio interview

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transcribed by:
Rick Iossi
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