Tiger Shark Research / by Felix Leander

The RJ Dunlap Marine Conservation Program is conducting research on tiger sharks in The Bahamas (particularly Tiger Beach) to study their movement patterns and reproduction.  The study is looking to answer several questions including:

  • Are tiger sharks using TB as a mating ground, feeding area or gestation ground? If not, where are these critical areas?

  • What are the overall residency patterns of sharks within TB?
  • Does dive tourism affect tiger shark behavior and movements at TB? If so, how?
  • How much movement is there in and out of TB? What are the migrations patterns of tiger sharks in the subtropical Atlantic?
  • How much time are tiger sharks remaining in the Bahamas Shark Sanctuary? If they move out the Sanctuary, where and when are the sharks most vulnerable to fishing exploitation?
  • How are shark movement patterns influenced by their body condition and health?

The research is being led by Neil Hammerschlag and his team.  It will be extremely interesting what the results will yield, particularly if shark diving tourism in the area has an effect on the sharks.  Many have theories - but none have been proven.

For more information visit University of Miami's website - and find out about all the other projects that the University is working on.

Tiger Shark at Tiger Beach, Bahamas.  Photo by Wolfgang Leander (2009)