An ariel view of the great white shark spotted off of Nauset Beach on Cape Cod. Credit: Atlantic White Shark Conservancy
The first great white shark sighting this year near Cape Cod was reported over the weekend by a research group that spotted the fish.
The shark was spotted Saturday on the ocean side of Nauset Beach in Orleans, according to the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy. Researchers said the shark was identified as a female and estimated to be between 12 and 14 feet long. It was seen about a quarter-mile from the beach.
The conservancy is a Cape Cod-based non profit that tries to raise public awareness about sharks and supports scientific research and community education.
A recently released report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said the population of great white sharks has climbed since 2000 in the western North Atlantic. The study attributes the rise to conservation efforts and an increase in prey.