Great white sharks’ investigative nibbles leave souvenirs in Bay of Fundy buoys

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ALMA, N.B. —
For the family behind the Alma Lobster Shop in southern New Brunswick, lobster fishing has been a way of life for four generations – but in recent years, they’ve been getting bites from something much bigger in the Bay of Fundy.

“Now, my sons are coming in with buoys chewed up by sharks, and they’re getting their teeth,” says owner Rodney MacDonald.

“We’ve never seen this before, but sometimes, this time of year they migrate up, they must be chasing the fish.”

Earlier summer, the shop posted pictures to their Facebook page showing a buoy that appeared to have small chunks taken out of it, alongside a photo of a tooth.

Owner Catherine MacDonald says shark sightings are nothing new for the fishing village of Alma, which is located near Fundy National Park, but teeth being left in the buoys is something that has only started happening in the last three or four years.

“We’ve been in Florida, and got some shark teeth off the beaches there, but they’re only tiny compared to these,” says Rodney MacDonald.

“And these are tiny compared to bigger sharks as well, but it’s really quite impressive – these are nice and white – you can see how they could cut you up.”

Local fisherman Martin Collins says some of the larger teeth that have been embedded in the buoys have been between two and a half and three inches long.

“They do an investigative bite – a great white especially – and they just bite it to see what it is,” says Collins.

“Maybe they’ll bite it three or four times, a little bit. They don’t chomp it in two – they could, but they don’t – and they leave teeth in the buoys, and we can identify what shark is doing it, and it’s always a great white.”

It’s a reminder for those who use the Bay of Fundy that it’s the place that these sharks do call home.

“You realize we’re not alone in the old world, and they’re beautiful animals,” says Rodney MacDonald.

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