By Outer Banks Voice on September 19, 2022
There have been increasing encounters between humans and sharks in the waters surrounding the Outer Banks in recent years, a trend largely attributed to warming waters. And here’s another example. These two bull sharks were caught in a fishing net in Buzzard Bay, just south of Colington Island, over the past weekend.
One relevant report in 2018, used combined studies by the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, East Carolina University and Simon Fraser University and was published in Nature.com. The data documented the “dramatic rise in the number of bull sharks using the Pamlico Sound as nursing habitat,” according to a Voice story.
The Nature study reported that the findings “suggest that increasing water temperature and salinity have allowed Bull Sharks to expand their nursery habitat. This shift will have unknown, but potentially strong, impacts on both the local ecosystem and interactions with humans.”
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I know they’re out there, but the sound has always seemed to be off limits to predators. Seeing this makes me think twice about the pull of that warm, shallow water.
These sharks have been found hundreds of miles inland for an ocean in rivers like the Mississippi for years. Nothing has changed to cause this.
My map indicates Buzzard Bay is near Oak Island. Your article references “south of Colington Island.” Which is it?
Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice
Check out this link https://www.bing.com/maps?q=colington+nc&FORM=HDRSC4
Climate change is the sole cause of super shark mutations and attacks!
“There have been increasing encounters between humans and sharks in the waters surrounding the Outer Banks in recent years” is a clickbait bullshit statement, unless you can cite something. Either be journalists or be another garbage blog.
Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice
This is from the study we linked to in the story. You can dig deeper into the data if you like.
A general northward shift in marine species distributions has been observed in the western North Atlantic Ocean, which may have significant ecological consequences. Large coastal sharks can have wide migratory distributions but show fidelity to specific nursery habitats. Here we show evidence for nursery range expansion into Pamlico Sound, North Carolina by a marine apex predator, the Bull Shark (Carcharhinus leucas). Previous assessments have shown little to no use of estuarine North Carolina waters as nursery habitat by Bull Sharks from 1965–2011. Juvenile sharks were rarely captured in a fishery-independent gillnet survey conducted by the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries (NCDMF) from 2003–2011, but were present every year from 2011–2016. J
Interestingly, the dolphins that inhabit the Sound are permanent residents. They don’t migrate back and forth from the ocean. Maybe the sharks are aiming to settle in permanently too.
Just the continuation of man made/unnatural climate change affecting the OBX.
The cited study on Nature https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-24510-z is much more specific on the causes: basically our beaches are being destroyed by wreckless policies.
It’s not nor should be political, it’s a reality. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-24510-z#Bib1
I remember big bull sharks being caught and more than one shark attack, east of New Bern, in the Neuse River, in the mid- 80’s to early 90’s. Buzzard Bay is much closer to the ocean than east of New Bern, so not so surprising to me.
Shark numbers on the rise has a lot to do with turtle numbers rising as well sea turtles are one of sharks favorite meals. Look it up
If we pay more taxes, legislate away more of our freedoms, listen to the experts and follow the science, the sharks will go away. Seems simple to me.
Lol Bobby sounds like a real scientist. Just because these sharks were found in the Mississippi River before doesn’t mean stuff hasn’t changed. Do you have any idea how much warmer the waters of the MR estuary are compared to here? The fact that the sound is now warm enough to house them is a big deal. I really wish education was better in this country.
Knock it off;
Science is real. You should check it out sometime.
Many local fishermen in Stumpy Point have caught juvenile bull sharks in their nets.
Mark, the study does not say, document, or track interactions with humans. It says that may be a result, but never goes as far as your doomy claim.
In any case, the statement needs to be attributed IN the copy. Not at the end of some vague link 2 paragraphs down. That’s how newswriting works.
Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice
Thanks for the journalism lesson. I’ll make a note.
I’ve kept my head on a swivel for years while fishing in the sound. Waist deep water with distressed fish on a stringer is an uneasy feeling at sunrise and sunset. I’m glad there is an article about this. I’ve seen too many naive people doing some really dumb things fishing in the sound. Anywho, Thanks Mark for the laughs in your responses.
Mark A Williamson
Any Commercial Fisherman can tell you stories of sharks caught in the sound, especially between the Lost Colony and Powells Point. They have always been there. Bull sharks are in every river, that reaches the ocean, worldwide. How we never got eaten , swimming at dusk in the sound, I’ll never know!!! I also remember a friends older sister telling us that swimming in the sound, did not count as a bath, but at 10 years old it did for us!! The sharks have been there all along, since time began
All fish are predators no mater how large or small. They go where the food is. Our charterand fishing industry depends on it. Nothing new here.
This must be an indicator of improving marine environment caused by global warming?