Shark week: Predators circling city - Metro US

Shark week: Predators circling city

We’re smack in the middle of Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week,” and New Yorkers may be surprised to know just how many sharks can be found right off our own shoreline.

Chris Paparo, a shark-keeper at Atlantis Marine World in Riverhead, Long Island, said sand tiger sharks and thresher sharks regularly swim through city waters — in New York Harbor, off Coney Island and even right under the Statue of Liberty’s nose.

“I’m not just talking about little fin sharks,” he said. “I’m talking fairly large sharks.”

In June, 18 basking sharks were spotted near Westhampton. The sharks aren’t a danger to people, but officials closed beaches anyway. Even great whites can be found off the coast of New York — but experts say not to fear their teeth.

“The chance of a shark attack is extremely low,” said Aaron Rice, a marine life researcher at Cornell University.

Follow Alison Bowen on Twitter @AlisonatMetro.

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