Florida State University : Research in Review

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Dean Grubbs

Dean Grubbs, an assistant scholar scientist at Florida State's Coastal and Marine Laboratory, uses satellite telemetry to monitor the movement patterns of bluntnose sixgill sharks. His work was featured in January 2009 on the National Geographic Channel program "Dangerous Encounters:

Jurassic Shark." The sixgill sharks are among the oldest sharks known, with fossil teeth dating to 190 million years. The fish, which can be found in the Gulf of Mexico, usually live on continental and insular slopes of the world's deepest oceans and in a few colder coastal areas Grubbs catches sixgill sharks by fishing overnight at depths of 800 to 1,300 feet off Hawaii and Virginia. He brings the sharks to the surface, measures them, collects tissue for genetics work, and then tags the sharks with a dart tag for future identification. He also tags a subset with archival pop-off satellite transmitters.—E.B.