Sunday, November 15, 2009

New records for Seychelles monitoring programme

Now that the frantic activity of the season is over, or suspense in the case of the last week, David has had the chance to start to organise the data sets and have a look in more detail at this years results and there are already some surprises.

Of the 42 sharks that were resighted from previous years, four of these sharks were first seen way back in 2001 where we only got a total of 15 photo IDs. This is a new record for Seychelles and with the exception of a few images taken in 1996 & 1997 it is unlikely that we will be able to find matches to older images.

So who did we have returning to visit? Well two of these sharks are regular visitors and have been seen in four years each:

‘Acoustic 4’ is a male that was originally fitted with a short range acoustic tag and photographed on 24th October 2001has been resighted and photographed on 11th September 2007, 22nd October 2008 and again this year on the 13th September.

'Acoustic 4' photographed when first seen in 2001 (top) and again in September this year.

Sey2001.001, also male, was an un-tagged shark originally photographed on the 6th August and 2nd Sept 2001; he was photographed again on 21st October 2003, 4th October 2006 and this year on the 23rd September 2009.

S201, another male, was first photographed and tagged with a marker tag on the 7th August 2001. He was re sighted and photographed with his distinctive zig-zag pattern on his left side again on the 22nd August and 22nd & 28th October 2005 and this year on 13th September & 22nd October 2009.

S201 wearing his marker tag in 2001 (top) and seen again on the 22nd October this year.

Finally, Sey.2001.007 is another male un-tagged first photographed on the 24th October 2001 but had not been seen again until the 15th of October this year.

So some very interesting things coming to light from this years data and we are hopeful of more to come!

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