White pointer should cruise in any day now

JOHN ANTHONY
Last updated 07:59 17/12/2012
shark stand
The great white shark named the Taranaki Terror could soon be back in our waters this summer.

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Shark experts say conditions are ripe for the return of the white pointer dubbed the Taranaki Terror.

Last week, the Taranaki Daily News received its first unconfirmed sightings of a large white pointer off the Taranaki coast.

The descriptions fitted that of a female great white shark which has returned repeatedly to Taranaki during summer.

Last summer, the shark didn't surface in these waters but in years prior sightings were frequent. The shark first hit the headlines in 2004 when it lunged at a small runabout off Waitara, leaving teeth marks in the hull.

Department of Conservation ranger Bryan Williams said he would not be surprised if people had already spotted the shark he preferred to call Mrs White. White pointers were known to have routine migratory patterns, he said.

"I'm picking that it's the same female white pointer and it's a very large female white pointer around the 5-6-metre mark."

DOC wanted to satellite tag the shark so its migratory patterns could be tracked, he said.

"'We would certainly be interested in any sightings."

New Plymouth Sportfishing and Underwater Club president Lee Drummond said there had been plenty of blue sharks spotted but he had not heard of any sightings of a white pointer. He also said he wouldn't be surprised if the Taranaki Terror had already shown up this summer.

The seal pups which started jumping in the water at this time of year would be a tasty morsel for a white pointer, Mr Drummond said.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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