From May til late October Basking Sharks patrol UK and Irish waters, favouring marine areas with high productivity - in other words: lots of plankton! Around our coasts a number of broad geographical regions have gained prominence as Basker hotspots - including England's southwest, the Isle of Man, the west coast of Scotland and the north of Ireland.
Keep an eye on the Shark Trust Basking Shark Blog to keep up to date with all the latest sightings and information from each hotspot!
Haley Dolton, from the Manx Wildlife Trust has kindly written a blog for the Shark Trust, keeping us up to date on all the latest Basking Shark sightings from the Isle of Man hotspot.
"The basking shark season has well and truly begun on the Isle of Man! The first sharks were spotted by the public on the 14th of May and have continued to be seen up to the 19th of May.
Sightings have been reported from the traditional basking shark hotspots of Peel, Niarbyl, Bradda Head and Port Erin. Schools of four individuals have been observed on a couple of occasions enjoying the rich, Manx plankton. This is interesting, as sightings of larger schools will hopefully mean we will observe some interesting behaviour between individuals this year.
A boat survey was carried out onboard Girl Pat with Manx Whale and Dolphin Watch on the 19th of May and a 6-7m basking shark was spotted! It swam directly underneath the boat, displaying its massive size very effectively against our small boat.
The finishing touches are being made to the Manx Basking Shark Watch boat, Happy Jack, and we should be in the water very soon deploying the 10 tags we have this year!"