Monday, November 17, 2008

Last minute shark…

Well although the monitoring season has finished the local population of whale sharks don’t seem to have heard the story and there are definitely still a few hanging around to the delight of visiting divers.

One such lucky group were the divers from Dive-Crew, a UK based dive-tour organisation who had been persuaded to visit Seychelles by their leader Colin Miles in the knowledge that they might just get a chance to see a whale shark. The 25 divers knew that they were outside the peak period but as diving was their main objective they were happy with the potential for an opportunistic sighting.

And on the 12th of November during a dive on Grouper Point with Dive Seychelles they were lucky indeed as a 5 metre whale shark came in to visit them! Steve Sparkes was the one with a camera at the ready and managed to capture some good images that everyone in the group wish they had!

After a somewhat belated presentation on the MCSS whale shark programme by Dr. David, Steve was happy to pass on the images for identification. Katie Brooks was more than eager to run them through the I3S system, partly to escape from double checking data from this season, but also to see if this was a known shark or a new one…. And to everyone’s surprise it turned out to be a new shark and became the 38th new shark identified in 2008.

The key identification area that confirms this as a new shark sey.2008.038 !

And so although the season is formally over there are still a few sharks around to distract the team members from the end of season ‘housekeeping’ chores!

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