Shark Named by Jimmy is Being Tracked off Jersey Shore

posted August 23rd, 2017 at 9:43 pm

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by Josh Martin

On August 14th, Jimmy Buffett boarded an Ocearch.org research vessel off the coast of Montauk, NY where he watched the efforts to tag and track great white sharks. The researchers let Jimmy name one of the tagged sharks, which he dubbed “JD” after his father James Delaney.

JD was spotted this week off the Jersey shore, about 178 miles from where it was tagged.

JD, a tagged 75-pound juvenile male white shark that was named by singer Jimmy Buffett — who was on the vessel when the shark was tagged — was only yards from the Barnegat Light beaches Wednesday morning, according to the shark’s satellite tag.

The 5-foot 4-inch long shark was tagged by OCEARCH researchers on Aug. 14 after it was captured off the coast of Montauk, N.Y. during the group’s monthlong Empire State and Garden State expedition to search for great white sharks.

The shark traveled 178 miles from its capture site to Barnegat Light since being tagged.

Chris Fischer, OCEARCH’s founder and expedition leader, explained why the “Margaritaville” singer was on board the vessel at the time JD was tagged.

“Jimmy has been a real big supporter of OCEARCH,” said Fischer. “He named the shark after his dad, James Delaney.”

OCEARCH is researching the life-cycle of white sharks, an apex ocean predator. The sharks are known scientifically as Carcharodon carcharias and can grow up to 21 feet in length and weigh over 4,000 pounds.

Fischer estimates JD, which can be seen being tagged in the video above, is one year old and is feeding on small prey fish such as mackerel, menhaden and squid.

A second juvenile male white shark named Bruin also “pinged” off the coast of New Jersey Wednesday, but about 100 miles east of the coastline near the continental shelf.

A ping is when the shark’s dorsal fin, where the tag is placed, appears above the surface for more than 90 seconds, which enables the tag to be picked up by satellite.

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