Explore Our History
Small in numbers, slow to reproduce and widely distributed around the world, white sharks are vulnerable to exploitation.
White Shark Research
July 2003In the second year of our white shark research project, we catch, tag and hold a young female white shark in an ocean pen off Malibu. She begins to feed—a first for a captive white shark—before we release her. Her electronic tag pops free in October, returning data about her activities during the preceding two months.
More About the ProjectIn May 2002 we launched a three-year study of young white sharks off Southern California. Our goals are to better understand the life history of these threatened ocean predators and to determine, systematically, whether it's possible to display a white shark. We believe pursuing these goals will contribute significantly to public understanding and conservation of white sharks.
From July 29 to August 4, 2003, we hold a young five-foot white shark in a five-million-gallon ocean pen off southern California. There, our staff observes the first confirmed feeding by a white shark in a captive environment. Data returned from electronic tags placed on her and two other sharks this summer reveal new information about the movements of young white sharks along the coast between southern California and Mexico.