3-D cage diving with great white sharks

Location: Shark Bay, Guadalupe Island, Baja California, Mexico
Our new submersible shark cage is wildly successful beyond anything that I had imagined.  The last couple of days in Shark Bay have been tough with 35 – 40 knot winds and a 3 foot swell rolling into the anchorage.  The biggest difficulty is that the current has been running in the opposite direction to the swell which makes it difficult to stage cage operations.   That’s the bad news.  The good news is that this only happens once or twice a season and the anchorage is usually flat calm.   We’ve always experienced very few shark sightings in these conditions in the past BUT that has all changed with the submersible cage!!!    I don’t think the sharks like to be on the surface in rougher weather conditions  (amazing how sensitive they are huh!!) and in fact once I really sat down and thought about it, I realized that all we were doing with chumming and baiting was drawing the sharks UP to the surface for a fairly 2 dimensional experience.   It is infinitely better to leave the surface and descend down to the shark’s home territory at 40 feet in a submersible cage.  Actually, I stand corrected.  We thought 40 feet was their home territory because we often saw 1 shark circling down there.  What we have actually discovered is that there is another “layer” of sharks at 70 – 80 feet  –  often 2 or even 3 animals.  The great whites seem really interested in the submersible cage and have been ascending to check it out, circling it endlessly, make some really close passes and even gently bumping it on occasionally.  The really great thing is that they often then continue upwards to check out our surface cages.   This has truly become a 3 dimensional perspective on the white sharks.   I think my next step might be to build 2 more submersible cages for 3 in total and hang 1 cage at 20 feet, 1 cage at 40 feet and 1 cage at 60 feet.  Especially as we finally figured out how to safely stage the sub cage in virtually all sea conditions..  Talk about having  a shark watching habitat!!   The only thing is that carrying 7 cages onboard seems like a wee bit of overkill!!  Captain Mike   ps.  check out the following clip to see what the diving has been like without the use of tuna throw-lines  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_y4cDGZtSk  
Weather: Sunny, very windy, 3 foot swell in the anchorage, air temperature mid 70’s.
Water: Low vis of 50 to 75 feet.  Water temperature 71 degrees.

By Nautilus Staff

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