Alessandra’s experience as a volunteer
Monday (7/10/17): Today we saw some great white sharks!!! We woke up extremely early to travel from our backpacker’s campout to Mossel Bay at around 7:30am. As soon as we got to the cage site, it only took two minutes before the white sharks came up to say hello. The volunteers all were able to fit into the cage nicely, and were the first to observe some nice big sharks. After about a two-hour trip, we headed back to shore, relieved in our first experience with these beautiful creatures, and can’t wait to see some more.
Tuesday (7/11/17): We went fishing on our research boat and went searching for some Great white sharks. We spent about two hours on the boat today, and every volunteer (6 volunteers) caught one shark today. We caught one leopard shark, one pajama shark, and a few other beautiful sharks. Although we were happy with our access in tagging sharks today, we weren’t able to track down any great white sharks today. We will not give up.
Wednesday (7/12/17): Today we went on the shark cage diving boat. We went at about 8:30 and stayed until around 12. Due to the absence of sharks for the past month, we were not able to attract any to the boat today. However, we did drive the boat around seal island a few times to show the customers a nice view of shark bait, and to show the natural habitat of the animals around the bay. After the shark cage diving trip, the volunteers took a quick trip to Bark, and we all were able to walk some lovely dogs around the fields and take some pictures with the adorable puppies.
Thursday (7/13/17): We went on the research boat today with the intentions of tagging a bunch of sharks with the hope of also tracking down some great white sharks. Today, we were able to track down and tag four leopard sharks, along with two soup fin sharks. We were in excitement, for the soup fin sharks are some of the great white shark’s main food sources, therefore, it may not be long before the great whites return to the Gansbaai bay. We did not track down any great whites today, however our day was fulfilled when it came to tagging sharks. One of the soup fins was a baby, and it was adorable.
Friday (7/14/17): Today, we went on the shark cage diving boat to look for sharks. Unfortunately, we did not see any, however, there was a clear sighting of a great white finally after a few weeks of empty waters, therefore, we are quite pleased. After the boat trip, the volunteers were taken on a journey of beer tasting, whine and chocolate pairings, and a fun trip with our fellow shark cage volunteer groups. Today was a fun day. TGIF.
Saturday (7/15/17): Today, the volunteers took a trip up to an awesome festival that had many fun offerings. They had live music, different booths with different drinks, and a whole lot of fun food. The volunteers had a great time today enjoying the scenic views of the mountains while enjoying some quality time with each other.