My time at the White Shark Trust feels an age ago, even though it was only 4 months ago.
I was research assistant between February and April 2004, and the experience is one I am sure I will never forget!
My background is in freshwater fisheries and ecology, so I see quite a few different species of fish, but nothing (and I mean nothing!!) could have prepared me for these awesome, magnificent animals. The first sighting of a Great White is one of the most memorable. First you see the dorsal, and then a mile or two behind the top of the tail wow! The largest shark I encountered was a mighty 5.5 metre specimen, which circled Michael’s 6.5metre boat ‘Lamnidae’ for what seemed hours.
The balance between research/study of GWS and the fun between Mike, Tracey and the assistants was spot on! What was excellent about working on Lamnidae was you felt as you were part of a worthwhile research project, carrying out work which will eventually help us understand and preserve GWS long into the future.
I would just like to thank the Scholls for their hospitality and humour whilst I was staying with them. The humour ‘bit’ is essential if you are wanting to work on Lamnidae as you are exposed to Michael’s jokes for up to 6 hours a day.
I am hoping to return to Gansbaai in June/July next year with my daughter Emily if that’s ok Mr and Mrs Scholl!!?