A bill aimed at providing more insight into the lives of California’s great white sharks has passed a first hurdle with a unanimous vote. The bill would shift more resources to scientists researching the sharks off the West Coast in hopes of making beaches safer as the great white population rebounds.
“For the last 10 to 15 years, we’ve seen an increase in the number of white sharks. We believe this comeback is connected to environmental protections that were established several decades ago,” said Long Beach State University Shark Lab director Chris Lowe. “The good news is that they are coming back. The tricky part is that we lack the tools to monitor them.”
Funds would be dispersed across a five-year span to various research groups along the coast. The hope is that the increased funding would allow for more expensive technologies such as smart tags, underwater robots, and DNA tests.
Apparently, the number of sharks in the area reached levels where researchers at the Shark Lab ran out of tags. The bill now moves to the state’s Appropriation Committee. Read more about the proposed legislature in this article from The Orange County Register.
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