BREVARD’S BIGGEST CELEBRITY: Katharine the Great White Shark Makes Space Coast a Regular Stop-Off
By Space Coast Daily // July 23, 2018
tagged by OCEARCH off Cape Cod
EDITOR’S NOTE: To celebrate “Shark Week,” Space Coast Daily will highlight its most popular shark stories from the past few years. This article was originally posted in February of 2017 about “Katharine,” a great white shark that has made the Space Coast a regular stop-off in her travels along the eastern seaboard and Gulf of Mexico since being tagged by OCEARCH in 2013.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Katharine the great white shark is back off the coast of the Space Coast – again – and could be Brevard’s most famous snowbird.
A 14-foot, 2,300-pound great white shark, Katharine surfaced five times recently just off the Melbourne beaches.
This superstar of the species Carcharodon carcharias was tagged by OCEARCH off Cape Cod, Massachusetts in 2013 to learn more about the migratory habits of sharks using satellite technology.
She was named in honor of Katharine Lee Bates, a Cape Cod native and songwriter – best known for her poem and song “America The Beautiful,” which has been called “an expression of patriotism at its finest.”
The Carcharodon carcharias species was made famous by the bestselling novel Jaws by Peter Benchley and the subsequent blockbuster film by Steven Spielberg depicted the great white shark as a ferocious man-eater.
Humans are not the preferred prey of the great white shark, but, nevertheless, the great white is responsible for the largest number of reported and identified fatal unprovoked shark attacks on humans.
As any celebrity, or president, worth their salt, Katharine of course has her own Twitter account, and when her dorsal fin breaks the surface of the water, a ping signal is sent to a satellite which tracks her movement in real time online at OCEARCH’s website.
Since being tagged in 2013, Katharine has swam more than 30,000 miles. Although Katharine is a frequent visitor to Space Coast waters, OCEARCH data shows her travels as far north as Newfoundland, and south to the Bahamas, and even into the Gulf of Mexico.
STEWARDS OF THE OCEAN
OCEARCH is a recognized world leader in generating critical scientific data related to tracking (telemetry) and biological studies of keystone marine species such as great white and tiger sharks, in conjunction with conservation outreach and education at a measurable global scale.
In a collaborative environment established by Founding Chairman and Expedition Leader Chris Fischer, OCEARCH shares real-time data through OCEARCH’s Global Shark Tracker, inspires current and future generations of explorers, scientists and stewards of the ocean, and enables leading researchers and institutions to generate previously unattainable data. OCEARCH has completed 26 worldwide expeditions.
SOCIAL MEDIA PHENOMENON
In 2015, OCEARCH open sourced the data on the Global Shark Tracker to 2.3 million users, achieved an annual global reach of more than 12.2 billion media impressions, a Facebook reach of 150 million impressions and a Twitter reach of 36 million impressions.
You can follow the OCEARCH tagged sharks by accessing the near-real time, free online Global Shark Tracker, by downloading the Global Shark Tracker App available for Apple and Android platforms, or by following OCEARCH on all social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
For more information on OCEARCH, its expeditions, and the Global Shark Tracker, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
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