Treasure Coast Newspapers
Published 5:47 PM EDT Sep 21, 2018
After being silent since January, Katharine the Shark "pinged" Thursday off the coast of North Carolina near Kitty Hawk.
When Katharine’s dorsal fin breaks the surface of the water, a signal is sent to a satellite, allowing her to be tracked in real time online. The last time Katharine surfaced was Jan. 5, east of Bermuda.
OCEARCH, a great white shark research and advocacy team, tagged Katharine in August 2013 off Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The great white shark was named by Cat Products fans in honor of Katharine Lee Bates, a Cape Cod native and songwriter, best known for her poem and song "America the Beautiful," which has been called "an expression of patriotism at its finest."
When tagged, Katharine weighed 2,300 pounds and was 14 feet, 2 inches long.
Katharine made her presence known Thursday on Twitter to more than 55,000 followers. Researchers at OCEARCH were excited, too, and posted Katharine's "ping" to Facebook.
Katharine spent the first several months of 2017 swimming around between Fort Pierce and Titusville off the Florida coast.
After disappearing for a few months, Katharine popped up east of Vero Beach April 19, 2017. She wandered around on a generally northward path, pinging several times off Brevard County in May 2017.
She also spent a lot of time near the Florida coast in 2014.
Follow Katharine's travels at www.ocearch.org and on Twitter, @Shark_Katharine.
More: Suspected shark attack kills man in his 20s near Cape Cod, police say
More: Great white shark Katharine pops up off Vero Beach | Videos, photos
Great white sharks
- Ocean’s most feared predator
- Can grow to more than 21 feet long
- Can weigh more than 2,500 pounds
- Feed mainly on large sea mammals, such as seals, sea lions and dead whales
- Have a bite force of 4,000 pounds
- Live mostly in waters between 54 and 75 degrees
- Are protected from harvest by Florida and federal laws
Follow Maureen Kenyon on Twitter: @_MaureenKenyon_