Researchers looking for great whites in Cape Cod

Researchers spent Wednesday a half-mile off the coast of Chatham looking to catch a great white shark.

Crew members aboard the OCEARCH have been patrolling Monomoy Island, which has been a hot bed of seal activity and has attracted great white sharks in large numbers over recent years.

They've seen eight of them, but none have taken the bait.

The same researchers caught two great whites off Cape Cod last year. It took a few weeks. They hope to catch 20 by the end of the month.

Researchers are aboard a 126-foot vessel that was once an Alaskan crab boat that has been outfitted to tag sharks.

Crew members spread bait off the back and have another smaller boat out fishing.

If they hook a shark, they lead it back to the larger boat which has a lift that brings the shark out of the water.

From there, they tag it, take blood and tissue samples and release it back into the water.

Researchers say it's not about thrill seeking but about learning as much as possible for ocean conservation and to let beach mangers know where sharks may be.