Rare sharks becoming more prominent off coast

SAN DIEGO - A local photographer has been following a group of rare sevengill sharks for years off the coast of La Jolla.

"This is Janice. She's the big female," said Terry Straight as he walked 10News through his footage.

Straight says this is the third year in a row that he has crossed paths with the 9-foot shark he has named Janice. Each year, she arrives in a bigger group of sevengills. This year, he even saw some smaller, younger sharks.

"It's good to see juvenile sharks," Straight said. "That means that the next generation is still out there."

Sevengill sharks, which are named for having seven gills, all but disappeared off our coasts in the 1980s and have only recently been seen again.

Experts at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography are trying to figure out why. Straight's video can help in that research.

He said at some points during the shoot, he was surrounded by as many as eight sevengill sharks, something unheard of a decade ago.

"It's just amazing," said Straight. "It's hard to describe the experience."

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