Written by Michael Palomba
Several juvenile great white sharks were spotted last week near Torrey Pines State Beach and Flat Rock Beach. The sharks were seen rather close to the shore, only yards away from surfers who appeared to be unaware of their presence. The exact number of sharks is unknown, but it has been reported that there were at least five and possibly as many as a dozen.
A shark advisory was in effect as of Thursday and signs have been posted to alert beachgoers and surfers. According to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department, there are currently no plans to close beaches.
The sharks were initially spotted by Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) employees who promptly notified local lifeguards.
Lyall, Bellquist, a marine fisheries scientist from The Nature Conservancy, said that shark sightings have become more common in recent years. He also noted that juvenile sharks, like the ones seen in San Diego, are “pretty harmless” to humans.
“It’s not until the sharks get 10 foot or greater when they start to eat larger prey items,” he said, adding that for juvenile sharks, “the focus is on fish, not people.”
This isn’t the first time sharks have been spotted near San Diego. Just this past summer there were two separate instances of shark sightings in Coronado.