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Shark spotted off York Beach

Globe Staff / June 15, 2010

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A porbeagle shark was spotted less than a mile off the Maine coast at Cape Neddick, the Maine Department of Marine Resources said yesterday.

The shark was seen feeding near the Cape Neddick Lighthouse on Thursday, Maine Marine Patrol Sergeant Daryen Granata said. A citizen reported the sighting, Granata said.

“It was just out there feeding, doing its thing,’’ Granata said. An officer on the scene confirmed it was a porbeagle shark, he said.

Porbeagle sharks are dark blue-gray and have white on their lower sides and underbelly, according to the department. They can grow up to 10 feet in length and can weigh more than 450 pounds, according to the department.

They are potentially a danger to humans because of their size, but are also considered sportfish, according to the department.

About half a dozen sharks of several species are spotted in the area every year, Granata said.

“Especially as the water temperature comes up, they are in the area,’’ he said. “Over the past few years, there’s been a few shark sightings off of York Beach, off of Wells Beach, and down around Ogunquit.’’ Thursday’s sighting was the first near York Beach this year, Granata said.

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