The Jersey Shore is famous for a lot of things, but huge sharks is probably not even Top 100 on the list. They are most definitely there though! Some of the same beaches that have hundreds or even thousands of swimmers on them in the daytime are filled with large Sharks at night.
These sharks are known as Sand Tigers and they’re actually probably there in the daytime as well, but just have no interest in humans. All of those INSANE teeth are used to grab and snare fish rather than tear apart human flesh. Don’t get it twisted, they would still absolutely carve you up, but that is not their goal.
I became internet friends with a guy named AJ Rotondella in 2017 and after a little while of talking online finally took it to the beach. He is a true professional and knows what he is doing. After poking around 4-6 different cities all up and down the Jersey Shore coast throughout the month of June in 2017, I got a call from AJ on a Monday afternoon to come on a tagging trip that night. That was great news, but also not great because of the unfortunate fact that I was sitting in Barstool HQ in the middle of Manhattan.
It was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down and we set off on New Jersey Transit (shoutout Frank da Tank). We got in the car around 7pm right outside of New York and set off. By the time we were actually at the spot and fishing it was well into nightfall.
What followed was an unforgettable night of gorgeous animals being tagged and released with AJ and scientists from Monmouth University. These sharks had tags surgically placed in them to provide crucial data that allows us to understand their movements and further protect understand how to protect them from being overfished to extinction. It may not seem like a lot but every shark we can learn from can greatly move forward our knowledge of the species. These things are incredible animals that I can’t wait to see again soon.
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