As if the world’s best big wave thrill-seekers didn’t have enough on their plate at Mavericks, Great Whites are known to roam the line-up.
Unlike the tiger shark that will just about eat anything, adult great whites are known to have a specific feeding preference for blubber-rich marine mammals (dolphins, seals, sea lions, walruses, whale carcasses, that kind of thing) and Northern California’s cooler temperate waters are known to serve as another rich habitat for them.
Colloquially referred to as California’s ‘Red Triangle’, this danger zone extends from Bodega Bay, north of San Francisco down just south of Monterey Bay and then out beyond the Farrallon islands.
Responsible for 3 of the 4 fatal attacks to occur in California in the last 10 years, the one exception involved a Great White incident in San Diego in 2008, although females are known to breed in warmer waters off the coast of Baja California).
But when it comes down to total numbers of attacks (just 33 over the last 10 years), California pales in comparison to the east coast of America.