‘New shark species’ shows up and causes closure of Spanish beach

by Lorraine Williamson
beach closed due to hammerhead sharks

LAS PALMAS DE GRAN CANARIA – New reports continue to appear in the Spanish media about sharks appearing close to beaches this summer. According to elDiario.es, on another Spanish beach, the red flag has been raised and swimming has been banned due to the presence of several sharks. 

Remarkably, this time it concerns a shark species that has not been observed in previous reports in the Mediterranean Sea. Moreover, this series of sightings has raised some concern among tourists. 

Also see: Blue shark caused panic on a beach in Alicante 

The closure took place on Sunday on a beach in the south of Gran Canaria. It concerned the beach of Patalavaca (Mogán). Two juvenile hammerhead sharks (Sphyrna lewini) were identified there. For that reason, entering the sea beyond a knee-height depth was prohibited, according to Willy García, alderman for beaches of the municipality of Mogán, as reported in the said daily. 

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Red flag 

Since last Thursday, the red flag had to be raised in the water of this municipality because of the presence of sharks. However, it is important to note that the hammerhead sharks sighted are harmless and it was merely a preventive measure. Sometimes a beach is closed off mainly to ensure the safety of the marine animals when interacting with humans. 

“New species”? 

It is important to clarify that the hammerhead shark is not a new shark species in these parts of Spain. What is remarkable is that this measure had to be taken in the summer. Until now, mainly blue sharks, also known in Spanish as ‘tintoreras’, have been seen here, a classic in the Mediterranean. 

Also read: In recent years sharks have been seen on these Spanish beaches  

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