New York Beach patrols are using DJI drones to spot sharks

Jul 8, 2023

Alex Baker

Alex Baker is a portrait and lifestyle driven photographer based in Valencia, Spain. She works on a range of projects from commercial to fine art and has had work featured in publications such as The Daily Mail, Conde Nast Traveller and El Mundo, and has exhibited work across Europe

New York Beach patrols are using DJI drones to spot sharks

Jul 8, 2023

Alex Baker

Alex Baker is a portrait and lifestyle driven photographer based in Valencia, Spain. She works on a range of projects from commercial to fine art and has had work featured in publications such as The Daily Mail, Conde Nast Traveller and El Mundo, and has exhibited work across Europe

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New York Beach patrols are using DJI drones to spot sharks

Is it safe to go back into the water? New York beach officials are trying to answer that question this summer with the help of a fleet of drones. The drones fly above the water, looking for sharks that might be a danger to beachgoers.

Long Island has allegedly had five bites already this summer, and the park director is determined to keep people safe. Just this last week, a drone spotted a group of around 50 sand sharks just off the coast, according to reports.

Thursday saw the sighting of a 10-foot shark at Robert Moses State Park. The beach was subsequently closed. “We are now more vigilant than ever,” said George Gorman, the state’s park director in Long Island, to the AP. “We have drones in the sky that watch over the waters. We have lifeguards on WaveRunners that watch over the waters.”

According to beach officials, encounters with sharks in New York were relatively rare, with just a dozen in the previous decade. However, the frequency appears to be increasing. The majority of bites are fairly minor injuries, and none have been fatal, however, the authorities aren’t taking any chances.

Petapixel identified the drones as DJI Mavics. The drones are deployed three times each day: once before opening, then sometime midday and a final round before the end of the day.

Cary Epstein, a lifeguard supervisor who pilots drones at Jones Beach, told the AP that the drones are very efficient at spotting sharks. “When you’re up in an elevated lifeguard station or a lifeguard stand, you can see up, and you can see out, but you can’t see straight down,” Epstein says. “When we do have sharks that are eating on these fish, it’s very, very clear to us. You could see it, no questions asked.”

Drones have captured sharks and orcas, astounding researchers with never before seen behaviour. The drone point of view gives an unparalleled view that is almost impossible without a light aircraft.

Some suggest that an increase in sharks may signify a healthier coastal ecosystem. Sharks are generally opportunistic predators and don’t deliberately seek to attack humans. When sharks do bite, oftentimes, it is merely a taster to determine whether the object is edible or not.

[Via Associated Press]

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Alex Baker

Alex Baker

Alex Baker is a portrait and lifestyle driven photographer based in Valencia, Spain. She works on a range of projects from commercial to fine art and has had work featured in publications such as The Daily Mail, Conde Nast Traveller and El Mundo, and has exhibited work across Europe

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