Marseillan: A mako shark washes up on a beach in Hérault, south of France

On Monday June 26, holidaymakers enjoying the beaches of Marseillan, in the Hérault region of France, witnessed a rare phenomenon: the presence of a mako shark, trapped in 30 centimetres of water. Although alerted, technicians from the marine protected area on the Agathoise coast arrived too late to save the shark. 

Mako shark ©Steven Surina - Shark Education

The Mako shark (Isurus oxyrinchus), also known as the shortfin mako, is a species of shark rarely found in the Mediterranean. It was an unexpected encounter for the holidaymakers at this Marseillan beach, who unsuccessfully tried to send the animal back out to sea.  

According to technicians at the marine protected area on the Agatha coast, this young specimen, nearly 2 metres long, showed no signs of injury or hooking. Although they are not certain, biologists believe that disease or infection may have been the cause of the shark's stranding. According to Renaud Dupuy de la Grandrive, director of the marine reserve, the team lowered the carcass into the sea "so that it could rejoin the food chain of its marine environment". 

Known for its great speed (over 50 km/h when hunting), the mako shark can live up to 30 years and measure up to 4 meters. "A majestic animal [,] at the top of the food chain and essential to the balance of our blue planet", describes Renaud Dupuy de la Grandrive. Highly prized for its meat, it is nevertheless a victim of overfishing and threatened with extinction. Its population has already fallen by almost 90%. 

1€ For The Ocean

With your donation of 1€ per month you can help fund our research and conservation projects, make a donation today and be part of the solution!

Thank you for your support of 1Ocean.

Subscribe to our newsletter