What is the likelihood that a shark is nearby?

We should learn to coexist.

via Smithsonian

That tool is what’s known as a heat map — a color-coded graphical representation of data. In this case, the goal is to map shark swimming behaviors and their relationship to environmental conditions, like water temperature, tides, and even lunar cycles. Researchers hope this heat map will give beachgoers and public safety officials the ability to predict the likelihood of a shark swimming near the shore. It’s not just a novel experiment for understanding shark behavior. Some researchers see it as emblematic of a growing shift in conservation science, as well as in Western societies, to finding more equitable ways of living with wild animals. In Cape Cod, being able to predict the presence of sharks in the water could allow beachgoers to coexist with the 2.5-ton animals whose ancestors have dominated the ocean for 450 million years.

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