Blue Shark Photo

By November 11, 2006Sharks

In the late 80s and 90s we used to leave the docks really early on summer mornings, motor 10-20 miles offshore in our little boats, far enough to get into really blue and bottemless water, drop a bucket of chum in the water, and make bets on when the blue sharks (Prionace glauca) would show up. When they arrived we would hop in and spend the day swimming around trying to photograph them, sometimes on a tank and sometimes just freediving. It was great fun. The last few times I did this, though, there were very few sharks, and none of the big ones we used to see. I hear talk nowadays that most of the blue sharks have now been fished out, presumably by longliners. This was shot about 3′ deep at sunset — bits of plankton are seen in the shot, they rise to the surface at nightfall. This is a juvenile, and shows none of the scarring acquired during mating that the mature males and females tend to exhibit.

A blue shark swims through the open ocean in search of prey, backlit by the sunset, Prionace glauca, San Diego, California

A blue shark swims through the open ocean in search of prey, backlit by the sunset.
Image ID: 02286
Species: Blue shark, Prionace glauca
Location: San Diego, California, USA

About Phil Colla

I am a natural history photographer. I enjoy making compelling images in the ocean, on land, and in the air. I have maintained the Natural History Photography blog since 2005 and my searchable Natural History Photography Library since 1997. Here are some tear sheets and behind the scenes views. Thanks for looking!