The White Shark Trust Field Research Assistantship is proud to introduce you to our assistants:

Sophie Fleur POST (Groningen, The Netherlands), Jessica REDINGER (Hope Valley, RI, USA), Oliver RUDD (Oxford, England) and Gael LAMIELLE (Decines, France).

Another strong series of winter storms is approaching our coastline... On Thursday the 29th of July 2004, we were not sure how long we could be at sea... but the strong winds only came later in the afternoon, and we had a very nice day at sea with 12 different White Sharks! This was going to be the last day for Jessica and Gael...
As it turned out, this was also Sophie's last day with the White Shark Trust... A unique opportunity presented itself in the last couple of days... Craig Spencer, head of the Overstrand Nature Conservation, had two open spaces for a safari to Namibia and Botswana, and he offered these to our assistants... Sophie decided to leave ten days early to join this adventure!
Below are some photographs taken by Sophie during the past few days...
And here are some photographs taken by Jessica during the past week, including the farewell party organised by the Barracuda team, Frank, Morne and Ivan, at Frank's home in his great pub on Thursday evening...
On Saturday the 31st of July 2004, we left for Cape Town early... Sophie, Jessica and Gael are leaving the Field Research Assistantship today... Always a very sad time of the program for everyone who stays behind (Michael, Tracey and Oliver). We visited the Penguin colony at Boulder's Beach near Simon's Town.
Unfortunately, this was the worst weather day we could chose to visit the Cape Peninsula... Rain, rain and more rain... Sophie was picked up by Craig Spencer to go on the Safari to Botswana in Simon's Town. After a sad parting, we drove to Cape of Good Hope / Cape Point at the southern tip of the Cape Peninsula.
The usual Baboons found around the Cape of Good Hope parking were absent, probably due to the lousy weather... Fortunately, the rain stoped for a hour, allowing us to walk up to the old lighthouse...

And for the first time, Michael spotted a White Shark swimming along the beach near the Point, the view from the top of the cliffs was amazing!

We then drove back to Cape Town to drop Jessica at the airport for her return flight to the USA... Another sad departure... We slept over in Cape Town at the St-John's Waterfront Backpacker. We met up with Andy and his girlfriend Tamara. Gael was leaving back to the USA via France on Sunday afternoon. We had our fare share of stepped good-byes for a while...

And two (in)famous quotes of the month...