Magazine article Oceanus

When the Hunter Became the Hunted

Magazine article Oceanus

When the Hunter Became the Hunted

Article excerpt

In waters off Mexico's Guadalupe Island, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) engineers deployed the REMUS SharkCam, a torpedo-shaped robotic vehicle with a special system to track and film great white sharks in the ocean.

"We wanted to test the technology to prove that it was a viable tool for observing marine animals and to collect substantial data about the animals' behavior and habitat," said WHOI engineer Amy Kukulya.

The team got the footage it was hoping for-and then some. A number of sharks attacked the SharkCam, leaving behind impressive teeth marks and providing the first close-up observations of predatory behavior below the surface.

SharkCam showed that sharks take advantage of the visibility in Guadalupe's clear waters. The sharks hide in the darkness of deeper waters as they stalk their prey. Seals are silhouetted near the surface by sunlight from above, offering highly visible targets. …

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