If it wasn’t enough that the blockbuster movie Jaws made us frightened to go into the water, Shark Week came along and both reinforced and fed our fascination with these toothy creatures of the deep. In honor of the sharktastic pop culture sensation that begins this week we took a few bites out of the legends, stories, and history that link sharks to Long Island.
Meet a shark at The Long Island Aquarium
The Long Island Aquarium has its very own week of fun events and exhibits lined up. Want to stand face to face with a shark? Enjoy the aquarium’s Lost City of Atlantis Shark Exhibit, a 120,000-gallon habitat that includes sand tiger sharks, moray eels, and a massive Queensland grouper.
Real life shark attacks on Long Island
It was widely reported when two children - a boy and a girl - were both attacked by sharks in separate incidents on the same day last July off of Fire Island. A tooth fragment was recovered from the attack on the boy. Neither of the children sustained any serious injuries. There is a database available if you want to research all of the recorded shark attacks that occurred in New York.
Great white tracked into Long Island Sound
A 500-pound great white shark named Cabot by researchers was reportedly tracked swimming in the Long Island Sound this May.
Shark nursery found off LI
The research group OCEARCH sought out a shark nursery off Long Island a couple of years ago. The researchers said they had spotted baby great whites which they then caught, tagged and released back in the water. They were understandably excited by this discovery.
Get up close and personal with a shark
Follow a great white shark on Twitter
Not quite ready to get that close? Follow these tagged great white sharks. They constantly update you on their location, usually with their biting humor. For a good time, follow @Gurney_Shark, @MissionShark, @BrunswickShark, @gwsharkcabot, @maryleeshark, @hiltontheshark, @Shark_Katharine, @GWSharkCabot, and @whitesharkhal to name a few.
Giant shark washes up on Gilgo
A massive basking shark washed up on the beach ten years ago. The shark was said to have weighed 5,000 pounds and measured more than 26 feet. It was buried in the dunes.
Decorate your space with a great white
Want to remember Shark Week even on the other 51 weeks of the year? You’re in luck. A Long Island-based business called Bobble Boss has the officially licensed Shark Week bobbleheads. Just don’t stick your fingers or toes anywhere near the pointy parts.
The Montauk fisherman who inspired a blockbuster
No list is complete without the customary mention of the legendary Frank Mundus, the Montauk fisherman and all around man’s man who inspired the character of Quint in Peter Benchley’s 1974 novel Jaws, which was made into a blockbuster summer film by Steven Speilberg. Mundus once brought in a massive and record-breaking 4,500 pound great white. Mundus later said he regretted the outrageous way he glorified shark hunting.