A Geospatial Analysis of Shark Attack Rates for the Coast of California: 1994–2010

Raid Amin, Erich K Ritter, Laura Cossette


The subject of this investigation was spatial and spatio-temporal shark attack clusters occurring along California’s coast between 1994 and 2010. Two hypotheses were postulated: (a) Shark attacks are proportionate to human beach activities. (b) No pronounced space-time relationship between human beach activity and shark attacks exists along this coast over time. The hypotheses were tested by using SaTScanTM version 9.1.1, a spatial scan statistic program. The results show that well-defined high- and low-risk areas have prevailed along the coast over the years. Because most attacks in California waters are attributed to white sharks, this animal was used as a model species to discuss the results.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/jee.v3i1.2700

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