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Expedition 78:
Coastal Ocean Explorers: Sharks - Palm Beach Day Academy

Palm Beach Day Academy boarded R/V ANGARI for a Coastal Ocean Explorers: Sharks expedition with ANGARI crew and scientists from Florida International University.

Recaptured Tiger Shark



March 5, 2024


Palm Beach County, FL


Science Team

Sara Casareto
Sophia Hemsi
Rainer Moy-Huwyler
William Sample
Sara Schoen

All sharks were fished for, caught, studied and released for research purposes under Florida permits held by Florida International University scientists.

Students and teachers from Palm Beach Day Academy were welcomed onboard R/V ANGARI by the ANGARI crew and scientists from Florida International University’s College of Arts, Sciences and Education. The day was split into two primary activities: (1) fishing for sharks using specialized research equipment known as drumlines, and (2) deploying a baited remote underwater video system (BRUVS). After instruction and training from the FIU scientists, the students and teachers worked side-by-side with the scientists to participate in all of the research activities. They helped assemble and deploy the drumlines, including baiting the circle hook, and then aided in recovery the equipment and checking for a shark after a 1-hour soak time.The participants also helped to construct, bait, deploy and recover the BRUVS.

We had an exciting day of fishing and caught five sharks, including three nurse sharks, one great hammerhead and a tiger shark! The Palm Beach Day Academy students performed quick scientific workups on the nurse sharks, collecting a series of measurements, taking a fin clip and attaching a uniquely numbered identification tag from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Cooperative Shark Tagging Program (NOAA CSTP). Making this expedition even more memorable was the fact that the female tiger shark had been previously tagged with a NOAA CSTP spaghetti tag! It’s very rare to get a recapture, and the NOAA report on this recapture told us that this tiger shark was originally tagged off the southeast coast of Georgia almost three years ago and has grown an estimated 2 feet since then!

This expedition was supported by Palm Beach Day Academy.


Sara Casareto

Sara Casareto is a Ph.D. candidate in the Marine Community and Behavioral Ecology Lab at Florida International University.  Her work focuses on behavioral ecology and trophic interactions. Her current research centers around elasmobranch biology and ecology, looking at different factors that affect juvenile shark behavior and decision making in coastal waters. The specific questions she is interested in involve risk from larger sharks, abiotic factors like salinity and temperature, and the presence/absence of different shark species. Originally from Maryland, Sara has been in Florida since 2016. She holds a B.S. in Biology-Marine Science from the University of Tampa and has studied marine species ranging from sharks to photosynthetic sea slugs. Sara hopes to further her career in predator-prey interactions to help elucidate management and conservation strategies for shark and ray populations. A passionate educator, Sara is involved in outreach through National Geographic and The Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and ANGARI Foundation.

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