White sharks are present in our waters all year round and beach users should be aware that there is always a small risk of encountering one of these animals.
Our research has shown that great white sharks in False Bay show a strong seasonal variation in how they use the bay. During the autumn and winter months (May-September), white sharks aggregate around Seal Island in the middle of False Bay. This is the time when the young of the year seals leave the island for the first time and make for an easy meal for the white sharks. During the spring and summer months (October - April), the seals learn to avoid the sharks' predatory attacks, and the sharks change their diet and generally move inshore where they patrol up and down the coastline in search of prey such as yellowtail, smaller sharks and rays. These months are when we see most shark sightings close to shore and when water users should be more vigilant.