Friday, August 28, 2009

Shark! (?)

Close-up for Mr. DeMille.

Not such a feel-good moment was when this big fellow appeared and I think it was a shark. Blog viewers feel free to weigh in on this, give me your opinion and venture a guess what type it would be.

Here are the reasons I think it was a shark:

The swim pattern was different.

The head is elongated, not cute and round like bottlenose dolphin.

Although it's not easy to see in this photo, there also appeared to be a second dorsal fin toward the tail.

And, even more strange, I think the dolphin were chasing it away. I guess I need to research whether dolphin will go after/chase away a shark.

One minute I'm jumping up and down as the dolphin play nearby, the next I get a shiver when this big fella swims a few feet from shore and then swiftly cuts away again. Eeeek!

[In reviewing my photos, I think the second photo in the post below may also be the shark, not one of the dolphin. But that's more of a question, so click on the photos to enlarge, look at them carefully to compare, and let me know what you think.]


Anonymous said...

Hi DJ, Wow you take great photos.

Both Mildred and I agree its a shark. Not sure what kind but you can tell by the fin plus your description of its movements. Dolphins do indeed scare sharks away especially when people are present in the water. It has been documented.
Looking forward to seeing you next week

Scottie and The Dougal

Linda said...

Looks like a shark to me.>. When I lived in Galveston we used to swim off east beach and the sand sharks used to come in fairly close to shore however they weren't aggressive at all ( sometimes they wold bump against our legs, but the one in your photo looks different.

Anonymous said...

From the picture it looks like it could be a hammerhead. They frequent the Ft Pickens beach area along with some bull and blacktips. I spotted a 4 footer patrolling Casino beach yesterday! He got spooked easily though. Tim (your old yellow house neighbor)

Barrier Island Girl said...

Hey Tim, I think after studying it more that it was a blacktip, especially since you confirmed we have them here. I was just going from my photos and my recollection of him.

I'd never have the courage to go diving like you do! Ha! Though I'd really like to see live starfish and sand dollars.

My best to your wife and the boys.


Anonymous said...

Thanks so much DJ, I was out standup paddleboarding beyond Portofino (where the gait is when the road was closed) and saw 3 small turtles close to shore. For whatever reason the dolphin also seem to be intrigued by paddleboards since we (Nageen and I) routinely get dolphin pods swimming with us! Go to and look on the left and you will see Yancy Spencer surrounded by a pod, I took that pic from the beach house!

Anonymous said...

Shark. The shape of the fin, the snout, and color all say bull shark. Damn, we're driving out to Pensacola next week. Is it safe to swim?

Barrier Island Girl said...

Anonymous, remember that it was just after sunrise when this happened. If you recall, experts say the time to stay out of the water is dusk and dawn. That is when shark feed. This was the first shark I've seen, though my friends have seen small sand and nurse sharks around. They are not typically a problem. You should be good to go for the weekend - just stay out of the water around sunrise and sunset!