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Behavior of tiger sharks along the Hawaiian Archipelago: Reef resident or ocean rambler?

Christopher Lowe, Ph.D.
California State University Long Beach

Wednesday, December 5, 2001
3:00 p.m.–Pacific Forum


Shark attacks on humans and shark predation on endangered species in Hawaii have generated interest in understanding the movement patterns of large sharks. We have been using a variety of acoustic and satellite telemetry techniques to address questions regarding short- and long-term movement patterns and behavior of tiger and Galapagos sharks along the Hawaiian Archipelago. Tiger sharks from different locations along the island chain show varied short-term movement patterns. Tiger sharks tracked off Oahu showed consistent and directed offshore movements, while those tracked at French Frigate Shoals appeared more site-attached. Longer-term site fidelity has also been shown to vary widely between the southern and northern end of the Archipelago. Differences in movement patterns could be influenced by food availability, seasonality, or tagging method.

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