We've detected two of our pregnant Bulls in one of our rivers!
Despite of our best efforts and more than a dozen years of research into the life history of Fiji's Bull Sharks, coming up with concrete evidence linking Shark Reef to one of the putative river nurseries has always eluded us as the tags would come off and the frequent floods would wash away the receiver arrays. But we've persevered, tinkered with the hardware, tagged a dozen pregnant Bulls in October and deployed new receivers in several rivers - and bingo, and this despite of the horrendous weather and floods a fortnight ago! With this having been little more than a small trial run, expect much, much more of the same next year!
And the river are teeming with babies!
This is obviously recruitment time, and Kerstin and her assistants from Projects Abroad and the USP are reporting impressive numbers from all monitored rivers - the bad news being that absent any management let alone protection, the little Sharks are being obliterated by the local fishermen.
This may well explain the disappointing numbers later in the year and is of course cause for grave concern, not least because it is also directly impacting on the long-term viability of Fiji's thriving Shark diving industry. But now that we have the evidence, we shall certainly go and speak to the powers that be - so fingers crossed!
To be continued no doubt.
Happy New Year everybody - may 2017 bring many more fantastic adventures!