Basking sharks are an elusive and sometimes unpredictable species which often defy even the best fortune teller’s predictions. It has been many years since large numbers of the sharks have aggregated for an extended period of time on the west coast of Ireland. The majority of encounters in recent years being on north and south coasts but 2013 in we have seen the birth of a new shark zone, Co. Sligo.
In recent weeks the Sligo coast has produced numerous encounters of 15-20 sharks on the surface and from the sighting reports the area still has more to give. The majority of reports have come from persons on the shore, so boat based enthusiasts could be in for a real treat if they can make use of the fine weather and get on the water.
Basking sharks are docile creatures but please be aware that operating your boat or swimming in close proximity to them can be dangerous for both you and the animal. Slow speeds and constant heading are key to a good shark encounter. Keep your engine in neutral if within 50m of the shark and let them approach you. The sharks are inquisitive and patience is essential to getting up close and personal with the Atlantics largest fish. Please do not drive or swim directly at the animals as they are easily spooked. Check out our free downloadable boat operators guidelines for more information. Remember where there’s one there’s more. So if you’re looking for a place to go for the bank holiday weekend, Sligo seems to be just the place for a quick shark swim fest.
Thanks to Ewings Sea Angling and Boat Charters for collating sightings over the past number of days.