Multiple sharks spotted in Edgartown waters 


Updated August 17

Two great white sharks and two hammerhead sharks were seen in Edgartown waters on Sunday, forcing South Beach to close for the day.

According to a 10:38 am Facebook post by the Trustees on Martha’s Vineyard, “two great whites and one hammerhead” were “sighted at Norton Point and South Beach” in the morning.

The Edgartown Parks Department initially closed South Beach, and announced on Facebook it was reopened at 11:30 am. Later in the day, at 3:12 pm, the department announced that “the water at South Beach will be closed for the remainder of the day due to multiple shark sightings.” The Trustees made another post at 3:44 pm, sharing there was a “hammerhead shark [sighting] at Norton Point Beach.” 

On Monday, the Edgartown Parks Department announced in a post at 12:51 pm that South Beach would be closed to swimming for the next two hours because of a shark sighting. A drone photograph showed two sharks that seemed to be hammerheads. Martin Pradel, who took the photos of the sharks, said they were “50 meters from the shore.”

Another shark sighting took place Thursday morning, forcing South Beach to close until 11:30 am. There have already been multiple shark sightings near South Beach earlier this month. 

“We’re having a lot of shark sightings,” Edgartown parks administrator Jessica McGroarty told The Times. “Since I’ve been here, we’ve never had this many water closures [relating to sharks].”

McGroarty said a network of people, such as lifeguards and the Trustees, “try to communicate with each other” about shark sightings. She said two-hour closures are the standard amount of time during shark sightings, although these can last longer if needed. 

“I’m always going to stay on the side of caution,” McGroarty said. “It’s better to be safe than sorry.”

Updated with comments from Edgartown parks administrator Jessica McGroarty.



  1. Stupid video with even stupider music designed to drum up fear

    Hello… Sharks live in the ocean. It is their home, and has been for millions of years.

    • Martha — couldn’t agree with you more about stupid video and even more stupid music.. That could have been filmed off the coast of South Africa…
      But the claim is 160 ft off shore —
      I don’t go that far out—
      When a shark comes 160 ft on land, and attacks someone, I will be more concerned about land sharks.

  2. With the uncontrolled explosion of the seal population in Cape Cod waters, you perhaps should be just a tad concerned. On the other hand, if a big wig or two get eaten maybe the seals will finally be controlled and we will slowly get our inshore fisheries back.

  3. Yeah and there is this little thing called an eco system that is ordered and based upon very complicated and not all together fully understood dependencies and codependencies so killing off a species or two does make a difference and will contain unknown impacts but fear not there are about 8 million non-insect species out there and we will have reduced it to about 7 million by around 2050 so progress sir!

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