Incredible video captured by researchers at Florida Atlantic University captured the blacktip shark's annual migration off Florida’s southeast coast.
FAU researchers refer to the blacktip shark's as the "snowbirds of the sea". The sharks migrate south during the cold months and head up north when the weather, and water, start to warm back up. They leave the north when water temperatures drop below 71 degrees Fahrenheit and start heading south.
The video was taken by FAU researchers on February 27, right off MacArthur Park in Singer Island.
“Last year, we saw a dramatic decline in the number of blacktip sharks that migrated south. In fact, it was so low that we estimated the population to be about one-third of what we have seen in previous years,” said Kajiura, a professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and director of the Elasmobranch Research Laboratory in FAU’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. “We want to make sure that these snowbirds come back to South Florida, because if they don’t, it will have a huge ecological impact in this region.”
According to researchers, this year's video off of MacArthur Park in Singer Island shows dramatically fewer blacktip sharks during migration season as compared to video footage from previous years.
Mary Stringini is a Digital Reporter for ABC Action News. Follow her on Twitter @MaryWFTS.