Whale Sharks Tagged Off Sarasota's Coast on May 28th
Friday brought an unexpected surprise visit to the waters off Sarasota: two whale sharks cruising just offshore. Each was more than 20 feet long. The visit offered a rare opportunity for Mote Marine Laboratory scientists to outfit the sharks with satellite tags.
Sarasota resident Capt. Brian Marcey of BreakWater Charters had a full boat of anglers Friday morning about 10 miles offshore when he spotted something in the water. After he realized he was looking at two whale sharks, he called Mote.
After Mote Capt. Dean Dougherty got Marcey's call, he alerted Dr. Robert Hueter, director of Mote's Center for Shark Research. Hueter quickly pulled together a team to tag and record the sharks' visit. One of the tagged sharks was a mature male about 25 feet long; the second was a female about 23 feet long.