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Encyclopedia > The Submarine (shark)

The Submarine is the name given to a particularly large and aggressive Great White Shark that was supposed to have dwelled in False Bay[1], near Cape Town, South Africa. Many people have reported encounters with the shark over the past thirty years or so but there is no doubt that the story began as a hoax by journalists and then quite unexpectedly grew to have a life of its own and became an urban legend. The tales told about the animal provide a rare example of an urban legend that can be traced to its origins. Binomial name Carcharodon carcharias (Linnaeus, 1758) For information about the band, see Great White (band). ... The Cape Peninsula, False Bay (top) and Table Bay,with Robben Island (right), from space, February 1995 False Bay, known in Afrikaans as Valsbaai, is a body of water defined by the Cape Peninsula (the finger-like projection on the right in the accompanying satellite image) and Cape Hangklip (Dutch... City motto: Spes Bona (Latin: Good Hope) Province Western Cape Mayor Nomaindia Mfeketo Area  - % water 1,644 km² 0. ... Urban legends are a kind of folklore consisting of stories often thought to be factual by those circulating them (see rumor). ...



In the early seventies the newspapers in Cape Town were full of reports about "The Submarine". It was easy to recognize, it was huge and it commonly did interesting things [2] such as biting outboard motors off the sterns of small boats. Everyone who saw the fish considered himself or herself lucky to have escaped alive.

The shark has been reported from many parts of False Bay but is said to spend most of its time around Seal Island. (This is not an unreasonable thing for a obligate marine carnivore to do, as the island teems with Cape Fur Seals). Binomial name Arcetocephalus pusillus (Schreber, 1775) The Cape Fur Seal (also known as the South African Fur Seal) and the Australian Fur Seal are two subspecies of the Arctocephalus pusillus species of fur seal. ...

The fish is so large it shows up on Sonar[3], and varies in length. [4] The F70 type frigates (here, La Motte-Picquet) are fitted with VDS (Variable Depth Sonar) type DUBV43 or DUBV43C tugged sonars SONAR (SOund Navigation And Ranging) â€” or sonar â€” is a technique that uses sound propagation under water to navigate or to detect other watercraft. ...

What really happened

In the early seventies a group of journalists from the Cape Times and the Argus gathered for a few ales at the Tavern of the Seas. A dispute arose as to how gullible the average reader really was. A bet was made to the following effect: the journalists would create an entirely fictitious tale about a Brobdingnagian shark in False Bay. It would have certain distinguishing markings and a certain huge length. The tale would be published, in one of the newspapers, with a fake "eye-witness account". The journalists would then sit back and wait until somebody phoned to claim that they had "seen" the fish. The Cape Times is an English language morning newspaper published in Cape Town, South Africa. ... Hera/Juno, offered the head of Argus by Hermes, places his eyes in the peacocks tail, in a decoration by Jacopo Amigoni (ca 1682 - 1752) There are five figures in Greek mythology named Argus: 1. ...

The results stunned everyone involved. The switchboards were immediately jammed with reports of sightings of the shark, or of the exact details of its markings and habits, or of its exact length.


  1. ^  Shark Attacks
  2. ^  DeeperBlue.net
  3. ^  SportFishInfo.com




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