Cape Cod Shark Hunters - F/V Ezyduzit - Sandwich, MA

2013 Shark Sightings

2013 Season Wrap-up - 

With the new year here and the 2013 tagging season behind us, the Shark Hunters would like to wish everyone a happy and prosperous 2014.  This year was full of challenges and set backs, but due to the help and support of the people of the Cape,  we were still able to accomplish many of our goals.

On the tagging front, we were still able to get a few tags out with our star shark of the year being Luci.  Luci is a beautiful seventeen foot white shark tagged off of Chatham in September.

The Shark Hunters also had the opportunity to collect two tissue samples this year, one of them being from Luci.  This is done using a special attachment on the tagging pole.  The attachment, provided by the state division of marine fisheries, allows us to obtain a tissue sample about one inch long.  There are many exciting things we will be able to learn from these samples, including diet and the effect of pollutants.

The receiver array placed along the back side of the Cape this year logged so much data that most of it has not even been analyzed yet.  When ever a shark with an acoustic tag swims within a hundred yards of one of the receivers it catalogs the coded number of the shark and when it was in the area.  This is key for tracking regional movements between the twenty receivers.

We have found that our finned friends stay around the waters of the Cape a lot later then we previously thought.  We were able to detect nine different sharks in November and December showing us that it is very possible that theses animals are able to tolerate much colder water than previously believed.

Looking to the future of next year, the need for funding will be greater than ever.  No one truly knows the duration to which we will have convenient access to this species for study, so getting as many tags out while we have the opportunity is crucial.  Working alongside the newly formed non-profit Atlantic White Shark Conservancy, we are raising as much funding as we can, but your help is still needed.  Any contribution to the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy is tax deductible and considered a charitable donation.  

If you are ready for a true once in a lifetime opportunity, The Shark Hunters and the AWSC are offering a "Great White Shark Safari" during the 2014 season.  A donation of $4,000 or more will get you five seats on the tagging vessel for a full day of shark tagging next summer.  You will get the opportunity to see these animals up close in their natural habitat.  You will get to go out on the pulpit and up in the tower for optimal viewing angles and photo/video opportunities.  You will also be given the honor of naming the shark or sharks we tag on that trip allowing you to put your personal stamp on the tagging program.  Don't miss out on this fantastic opportunity!  Why fly across the globe to see an apex predator when we have dozens of them right here off of beautiful Chatham!  Any donations to AWSC are greatly appreciated.  If you are interested in booking a "Great White Shark Safari" go to the contact us page and email and send Niko or BIll an e-mail.  

As always, we thank you for your continuing support.  If you are planning on visiting Cape Cod, be sure to visit the Monomoy White store on Main Street, Hyannis, the official gear headquarters of the Shark Hunters, You can also visit them online to purchase official shark hunters gear along with other great merchandise all featuring great white sharks.

July 16, 2013

Today, off Monomoy George spotted 6 White Sharks and 1 Porbeagle Shark.  From the Ezyduzit, Bill, Niko and crew filmed with an underwater camera.  No tagging was done.  All of the sharks were spotted in the remote section of Monomoy.  Numerous times throughout the day, from the air George checked out the beaches from Chatham to Nauset and no sharks were observed.  

White Shark  July 16, 2013
White Shark July 16, 2013
Porbeagle Shark July 16, 2013
Porbeagle Shark July 16, 2013

July 14, 2013

On a survey flight off Chatham, MA, George Breen spotted the white shark below, which is estimated to be approximately 15 feet long.  From the air, George followed the shark for a mile along the beach as the shark was stalking seals.  High overcast clouds prevented George from getting clearer photos.  Weather permitting, Bill, Niko and George hope to get out tagging during the coming week.


July 14, 2013

May 13, 2013-

This is the data from a shark we tagged last year (August 24, 2012).  The length of the track is three hours long.  As you can see, the animal maintained in proximity to the beach for the entire three hour period; never going more than a mile offshore.  We hope to be able to bring you several more tracks this year!

2012 Shark Sightings

October 2, 2012-

Today, George spotted 2 white sharks off South Beach in Chatham, MA.

October 2, 2012
October 2, 2012
October 2, 2012
October 2, 2012

September 23, 2012-

During George's flight today he observed a large white shark which, due to her large size and tag placement, he believes could be Curly.  The shark was circling a severely bitten seal off South Beach.

September 23, 2012
September 23, 2012
September 23, 2012
September 23, 2012

September 13, 2012-
Today the team spotted 6 white sharks in the Chatham, MA area.  Three of the sharks had been previously tagged by the Cape Cod Shark Hunters.  Two of the other white sharks spotted were tagged today.  In the morning, an 18-foot white shark was tagged in Chatham Inlet.  In the afternoon, a 16-foot white shark was tagged off South Beach in Chatham. 

September 13, 2012 morning
September 13, 2012 morning
September 13, 2012 afternoon
September 13, 2012 afternoon


September 11, 2012-
This afternoon, George Breen completed a marine survey flight over Chatham, MA area.  Spotting conditions were poor due to the swell.  He did manage to see a white shark off the new inlet at Chatham.

September 11, 2012
September 11, 2012

September 7, 2012-
Cape Cod Shark Hunters team went tagging white sharks off Monomoy coast, south of Chatham, MA.  Pilot George Breen was able to fly for only a couple hours due to poor weather conditions.  However, the team managed to tag a 14-foot white shark.  Captain Bill Chaprales and Captain Nick Chaprales of the Ezyduzit were accompanied by John Chisholm of MA Division of Marine Fisheries.  Using an underwater pole cam, they were able to follow the tagged shark for approximately one hour as it traveled for a distance of 3 miles moving north towards Chatham Inlet.     

Shark Tracks from August 30, 2012 Taggings-

August 30, 2012-
In the morning, Cape Cod Shark Hunters tagged 2 white sharks off Nauset Beach.  Due to the proximity to the beach, the team notified the federal and state officials who closed some beaches in the area.

August 30, 2012
August 30, 2012
August 30, 2012
August 30, 2012

August 17, 2012 – 
The shark hunters left the dock in stage harbor at 8am hoping for a repeat of the success of last trip. Upon entering shark cove, about half way down the island a large colony of seals were discovered hauled out on the beach. Upon further inspection a seal was seen crawling up the beach with a large bite taken out of its side. The wound was still bleeding profusely indicating a fresh attack. As everyone’s attention was on the seal something caught Niko's eye from the tower. The culprit of the attack, a ten foot white shark, swam right under the boat and was heading off shore at a fast pace. Glare in the water from heavy cloud cover made it difficult to follow the fish and it was eventually lost before it could be tagged. A total of seven bitten seals were counted. All the seals were alive with the bites, however at least three will surely be fatal. The sharks were in stealth mode for the rest of the day as that was the last sighting of the trip.

August 14, 2012 – 
The shark hunters had a great day of tagging!  The action started off the southern tip of Monomoy Island as the shark hunters tagged a twelve foot white shark around 9am.  A few hours later, George found a sixteen footer swimming just inside the striped bass fleet off of new inlet in Chatham. The shark hunters steamed up the coast of Chatham in pursuit of the animal. The shark was still up when the hunters arrived on scene. It was making its way north along the beach about a hundred yards off shore. The shark was tagged around noon. Shortly after being tagged, the shark swam into the deep. The day ended back off of Monomoy where the hunters tagged another 10-12 foot white shark. Using the hydrophone to listen to the tag, the hunters then discovered there were two other tagged sharks in the area! George saw a total of seven sharks and the boat was able to tag three in what was a great day of action!

August 14, 2012
August 14, 2012
Keep in mind, pulpit on the Ezyduzit is about 20 feet long.
August 14, 2012
August 14, 2012

August 9, 2012 – 
The shark hunters took their first expedition of August. On board for this trip was the legendary shark expert Rodney Fox. Fox is best known for surviving an attack from a massive Great White in Australia back in the sixties. For the last fifty years Fox has been educating the public about shark conservation. The shark hunters did not disappoint as they tagged a twelve foot Great White shark and tracked its movements around the waters of Chatham for a record six hours. When the hunters and Fox ended the track the shark was headed south for the island of Nantucket. The shark covered nearly a fifteen mile range in the six hour track.

July 31, 2012-
 State biologists confirmed today that what was believed to be a seal bite was indeed the work of a Great White! A man was bathing in the waters off of Truro MA yesterday when he was attacked. The shark took both of the man’s legs into its mouth and bit down mid calf. The man attempted to kick his legs free of the sharks grasp, causing severe tearing to tendons in his legs. The man was able to escape to the safety of the beach where he was aided by fellow beach goers. The man attacked was taken to Cape Cod Hospital. His injuries were deemed too great for treatment on the Cape. He was later transferred to Mass general where he underwent surgery early this morning. The swimmer is expected to survive. The size of the Great White is still unknown and very little shark activity has been reported in the area of the attack. The Cape Cod Shark Hunters will continue their patrols and tagging activity.

July 27, 2012-
Today, this 18 foot white shark was tagged at 11:00 AM off Chatham, MA.  After the tagging, the team followed the shark for more than 5 hours as it moved north along the beach up to the Coast Guard Station north of Nauset Inlet.   
July 27, 2012
July 27, 2012
July 27, 2012
July 27, 2012
July 27, 2012
July 27, 2012

July 17, 2012-
Pilot George Breen spotted 2 white sharks today.  From the Ezyduzit, Captain Bill Chaprales and Captain Niko Chaprales tagged a 14 to 16 foot white shark early this morning.  The photo below is of Bill Chaprales as he tags the shark.  Later in the day, a white shark estimated to be 8 to 10 feet was spotted. 

July 16, 2012-
Cape Cod Shark Hunters found 2 white sharks just offshore of Chatham Main Inlet this morning.  The larger shark, estimated to be 14 to 16 feet long, was successfully tagged by Captain Bill Chaprales.
July 16, 2012
July 16, 2012
White shark checking out seals near entrance to Chatham Harbor
July 16, 2012
July 16, 2012
Bill Chaprales on pulpit just after tagging!

July 13, 2012-
Today, pilot George Breen spotted 11 white sharks in an area 2 to 3 miles North of Monomoy Point, Chatham, MA.  Some of these may have been repeat sightings.  Captain Niko Chaprales guided the boat as Captain Bill Chaprales successfully tagged 3 white sharks.  What an afternoon for the team!
Pilot George Breen was so busy with the tagging operations that he was not able to take many photos, but did get a picture of this 16 foot white shark off Monomoy Point.
Christina Hager of WBZ-TV accompanied George for part of the survey flight.  Video will be shown on WBZ-TV News at 11:00 PM tonight.
July 12, 2012-
 : Pilot George Breen spotted a 14 to 16 foot white shark south of South Beach, Chatham, MA.
Pilot George Breen spotted a 14 to 16 foot white shark south of South Beach, Chatham, MA.
Also, numerous seals were seen southeast of Provincetown, MA in the Peaked Hill area.
 : Also, numerous seals were seen southeast of Provincetown, MA in the Peaked Hill area.

July 11 2012-   
There was no luck for the shark hunters today. They searched for hours near Nauset beach. The crew of the Ezyduzit came in contact with four sharks however the ruthless creatures did not cooperate. 
July 10, 2012-
Along with scientists from WHOI and Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, Cape Cod Shark Hunters tagged a 16 foot white shark off Monomoy today.  There were plenty of seals on the beach, as you can see from the photo.
 : July 10, 2012
July 10, 2012
 : July 10, 2012
July 10, 2012

July 9, 2012-
 Today the Cape Cod Shark Hunters tagged the first Great White of the season. The crew of the Ezyduzit and spotter pilot searched from south beach Chatham to Monomoy. Spotter pilot George Breen successfully spotted 5 Great Whites. One Great White as large as 18 feet long! The lucky shark tagged was 16 feet. Captain Bill explained that they stalked the 16 foot Great White for a solid hour.  “The sharks were staying deep today which made it extremely difficult to tag. However, we came out with a successful tag which made for a great day!” Capt. Bill.

July 8, 2012-
During a survey flight, Pilot George Breen saw 3 white sharks this morning in the Chatham/Nauset area.  The photos below are of the largest shark, which is estimated to be 18 feet.  At 8:30 am this shark's position was N4145.5 W06955.3  It appears that this shark has been tagged.
July 8, 2012
July 8, 2012
July 8, 2012
July 8, 2012
July 3, 2012- 
Two sharks were sighted this morning at 10:20 a.m.  One 16 foot shark was spotted of the coast of Monomoy Island.  The other was spotted south of South Beach in Chatham and chasing seals.  Be aware of seals while swimming.  If the seals scatter from an area then it is likely that a shark is present.

July 2, 2012 - 
16 foot great white shark was spotted a half a mile south of South Beach in Chatham.

June 30, 2012-
14 foot great white shark spotted north of Chatham inlet, swimming towards the inlet.  The shark did not enter Chatham harbor.

June 28, 2012 -
George Breen discovered a 16 foot great white shark during his routine flight this afternoon. The shark was located just north of the Chatham harbor inlet in close proximity to popular swimming beaches. The sharks have returned to the area so swimmers are asked to use caution. Do not swim at dusk or in locations heavily populated by seals. The shark hunters are currently preparing the Ezyduzit for the first tagging expedition of 2012. The story will be fully covered by Channel 5 WCVB on tonight’s evening news. Be sure to check back daily as all of our tagging and sightings will be posted here. Before you hit the beach be sure to hit!

2011 Shark Sightings
August 23, 2011
The Shark Hunters took to Chatham again today after beach closures and shark fears in the past week.  More sharks were tagged, and one even hung around the boat for a while!

August 12, 2011 -
On Friday, the 12th, the Shark Hunters ventured out to sea to attempt another day of tagging.  The shark was spotted from the boat immediately upon arriving to Monomoy Island.  However, a passing boat ran the shark down before the animal could be tagged.  George spent the rest of the day flying up and down the eastern coast of Cape Cod, but to no avail.  This by no means tells us the sharks are gone and swimmers should still use extreme caution and stay far away from seals.  Weather will keep the hunters at the dock for the next few days, but as soon as the wind lets go and the sun comes out, the Ezyduzit will be back on the hunt.
August 2, 2011 - 
Today, the shark hunters faced one of their greatest challenges to date.  A 14 foot white shark was poised to enter Chatham Harbor and was dangerously close to Lighthouse Beach.  George found the shark at 12:30 while the Shark Hunters were north of Chatham Inlet attempting to tag another shark.  With the impending danger of the shark heading for a packed beach, the Ezyduzit was in hot pursuit.  The shark was inside the inlet, about 500 feet from the beach when the Hunters got on the scene. The predator stayed deep, evading Bill's every chance to place the tag.  An hour and a half long chase ensued, with the shark leading the Hunters all over Chatham Inlet.  The fish made a critical mistake when it swam in to attack a seal pinning itself in shallow water.  Seeing their only opportunity to win the chess battle with the beast, Niko swung the boat in close and Billy was able to place the tag.  The shark then swam into the deep.
Lighthouse beach remains safe today.

July 31, 2011 - 
10:30 A.M. - George spots 15ft white shark just south of South Beach not far from where two sharks were tagged this week.  This shark did not have a tag in it.

July 28, 2011 - 
Shark Hunters tagged two great white shark off of Monomoy Island.  One shark was 16 feet long and the other was 10 feet long.  Fox News was along for the trip, doing a story on the increasing white shark population along the island.  That segment should air within the next two weeks.

2010 Shark Sightings
September 1, 2010 - 
3 P.M. - The Shark Hunters tag a twelve foot white shark a half mile away from the seal that was bitten in half. It is doubtful that the shark tagged was the seals attacker due to the size of the bite on the seal. It was most likely a much larger shark that killed the seal.
2 P.M. - The Shark Hunters discover an adult female seal off the southern tip of south beach that had been bitten in half by a large great white shark. The animal had deep ragged lacerations that indicated it was a white shark.
9 A.M.- The Shark Hunters chase a sixteen foot white shark into shallow water off of South Beach. Billy was able to tag the shark but, due to faulty equipment, the crimp on the tag failed and the tag did not hold in the fish.
August 31, 2010- Shark Hunters leave the dock around six. Coming around the tip of Monomoy Island a large seal colony is observed. Two hours later we returned to the colony and discovered one of the adult females had been attacked while we were gone. The seal had a large chunk missing from her hind quarters and most of her internal organs were exposed. To evade the sea birds picking at it's exposed insides, the seal made one last effort to get back in the water. Once in the water it began bleeding profusely. We followed it for about an hour then were drawn away when George spotted a 15 foot white shark a few miles to the south. Attempts were made to tag the shark but it went into deeper water. The wounded seal was never seen again.
August 26, 2010- The team discovers a dead humpback whale ten miles east of Chatham. A sixteen foot female great white was witnessed circling the whale in a defensive manner. A cage was lowered into the water to attempt to get underwater footage of the animal. The shark came to inspect the cage and became snarled in the top of it. In her attempts to get away and swim freely she broke one of the bars on the cage by violently shaking it with its tail. No sharks were sighted close to shore but the water was murky and the surf was high which made it difficult for George to see in the water.
August 21, 2010
10:20 A.M. - Shark Hunters tag a 12 ft. Basking Shark  about 1/2 mile south of where the Great White was tagged 20 minutes earlier.
10 A.M. -  Shark Hunters tag a 12 ft. Great White at the south break of Chatham Inlet, right outside the Harbor.  The shark was in 6.5 ft. of water and about 100 ft. off shore with dozens of people watching from the beach.
August 18, 2010 - The Shark Hunters attempt to go tagging early in the morning. No sharks were sighted, however the water temperature was unusually cold, at 53 degrees, mainly due to the south winds pushing cold water up from Davis Shoal. This does NOT mean that their are no sharks in the area and people should still abide by the closed beach rules and use caution at beaches that remain open.
August 12, 2010
12 Noon- Chatham Harbor closed to swimming due to shark sightings inside the harbor.  South Beach also remains closed.
8:50 A.M. - The shark hunters tag a 13 foot great white shark. The shark was in four feet of water about seventy feet from the beach. It was swimming north and was located about a mile south of Chatham Harbor.
8:00 A.M. - An unconfirmed report came in about a ten foot great white in Chatham Harbor near the fish pier. 
A pleasure boat witnesses a small seal attacked by a great white shark right outside of Chatham Harbor. Two photos were taken and the shark was confirmed as a 12-14 foot great white. The shark had a distinctive wound on the rear portion of its dorsal fin.
August 9, 2010 - George's Flight Report - Flew from Chatham Inlet to 3 miles North of Wellfleet Inlet.  Saw no sharks.  Flew southbound and picked up a 10-12 ft shark approx. 1 mile south of Chatham Inlet.  He was headed south along South Beach. I followed the shark for about 5 miles.  The majority of the time he was less than 100 yards from the beach (see picture below, shark is circled).  The seals in the area were mostly on the beach.  Some were in the water, but very close to shore.
August 7, 2010 - George's Flight Report - Left Falmouth at 7:00 AM for Chatham.  Saw 3 or 4 sharks off South Beach.  Ezyduzit tagged a large shark (estimate 13').  Wind came up in the afternoon headed back to Falmouth.  Landed at 15:00. 
August 6, 2010 - George's Flight Report - Take-off at 8:00 AM from Falmouth.  Flew over the eastern shore of the Vineyard then over to Muskeget area off Nantucket.  Observed approx. 1000 seals in the Madaket area.  From there went over to Monomoy and checked out along the beach as far as Nauset Inlet.  Weather was great but no sharks were seen. Back at Falmouth at 10:15.
August 3, 2010 - 7:30 a.m. - George takes an early morning flight to patrol the beaches of Chatham.  He finds a ten foot Great White at the mouth of Chatham Harbor.  George spent about an hour in flight and that was the only shark seen today.
July 31, 2010 -
10:30 a.m. - Shark Hunters tagged a 10 foot great white shark.
9:30 a.m - A 400-pound dead seal is discovered by the Shark Hunters on the south tip of Monomoy Island.
July 30, 2010 -
3:00 p.m. - Due to the large number of Great White Sharks off of the coast of Chatham, the Harbor master and the Town have deemed it to be hazardous to keep the beaches open.  The beaches of Chatham and Monomoy Island will remain closed until further notice.  We ask that you heed this warning and refrain from surfing, tubing, or kayaking in the waters that have been closed.  We will notify you on our site as soon as the beaches are safe to reopen.  Thank You.
12:15 p.m. - George spots 3 Great White Sharks off South Beach in Chatham, all within a one-mile radius.Shark Hunters notify the Chatham Harbor Master and the Division of Marine fisheries of their recent findings.  A photographer from The Boston Globe was up in the plane and photographed each of the animals.
8:00 a.m. -The Shark Hunters gear up to deploy hydro-acoustic buoys that will be spread around Monomoy Island and Chatham.  Once the sharks are tagged with hydro-acoustic tags, these beacons will record every time a shark comes into proximity with one. 
We plan to but the buoys out and continue tagging sharks tomorrow.  If you are planning on boating in that area tomorrow, we appreciate your continued support.  However these sharks are extremely vulnerable to the pressure wave created by boat wakes.  It drives them down from the surface and makes tagging difficult.  We ask that if you see the Ezyduzit to please watch from a distance of at least 1/2 a mile as to not interfere with the study.
 - Thank You, The Shark Hunters
July 27, 2010 - Seven great white sharks spotted off of South Beach near Chatham Harbor.  Sharks ranged in size from 10-18 feet.  One 14 foot female was tagged with a pop up tag about 150 feet from shore.  Shark Hunters advise people to be aware of their surroundings while bathing.  Do not swim around groups of seals or in murky water.  If you do see a shark, do your best not to startle it and DO NOT splash water.  Quickly and calmly get to the beach and notify your harbor master or the Shark Hunters.
July 25, 2010 - Three great white sharks sighted, one off the tip of Monomoy Island and the other two near the north break of Chatham Harbor.  One shark was confirmed sighted by beach goers from the shore.  Shark Hunters gear up to attempt to tag sharks on July 27, 2010.
July 20, 2010 - George Breen sights 15 foot great white shark stalking seals south of Lighthouse Beach on the Eastern side of Cape Cod.  In a failed attempt to attack a seal, the shark beached itself in shallow water but was able to turn around and swim back out to sea.
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