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Mike Bartel/YouTube

Watch Cape Cod vacationers help save a stranded white shark

They kept its gills wet until help arrived—because fish are friends.


Cynthia McKelvey


Posted on Jul 14, 2015   Updated on May 28, 2021, 8:57 am CDT

It’s true that Shark Week is over, but that didn’t stop one Massachusetts shark from staring in his own YouTube video. 

The footage was recorded Monday when beachgoers in Catham, Massachusetts, discovered a seven-foot juvenile white shark stranded on the shore. 

The shark was reportedly attempting to catch seagulls when it beached itself. Some good (and brave) Samaritans kept the shark alive by dumping water on it until the authorities could drag the shark back into the water.

According to a local news source, WFSB, the beachgoers said the shark appeared to be dead when it was found, but it showed signs of life when splashed with water. Sharks need to have water on their gills  to breathe, so they won’t last long on dry land.

You can hear the crowd in the video cheer when the shark started to flop around after being doused. 

Researchers tagged the shark before releasing it. White sharks are not uncommon sightings in Cape Cod. A thriving seal population attracts the predators. Why this shark may have been going for seagulls on the shore is unclear.

Screengrab via Mike Bartel/YouTube

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*First Published: Jul 14, 2015, 4:51 pm CDT