Sydney’s beaches are becoming increasingly crowded, particularly in the eastern suburbs (Bondi to Maroubra) where the early and late sessions are packed with surfers hell-bent on getting their salt-water fix outside office hours.

However, a radical new development is helping to keep the numbers down. There has been a swathe of shark sightings in recent weeks by both surfers and drone pilots on the Emerald City’s beaches. The recent capture of a 4.6m Great White at Maroubra also came as stern reminder to the Bra Boys who the real locals are. As summer hots up and the beach becomes the epicentre of city activity, the Men In Grey Suits are emerging as Sydney’s major disruptors. The daily presence of bait balls swirling close to shore seems to be a major contributing factor in the increased shark presence.

In the clip below, taken just two days ago by @dronesharkapp, the droner spots what he believes to be a Great White just off the break zone at Tamarama (around the corner from Bondi next to Bronte). As the large shark spears through an inky-black school of fish the scenery is quite spectacular. The sense of pandemonium is made apparent by the running commentary of the pilot and the sound of a lifeguard coming on to the loudspeaker and delivering a blunt message about the ‘Great White’ in the water. In a dramatic turn of events it seems like the fish almost chase the shark away in the end.     

The question has been raised as to whether or not ignorance is bliss and you’d rather not know if there is a shark present. The drones are probably more likely to spot a shark before a surfer does at surface level. One argument suggests that it’s the size and type of the shark that should determine if the alarm is raised. As more drones occupy the skyways on our coastlines it’s a debate that will certainly be had. In the meantime the sharks are playing the role of marine crowd controllers on Sydney’s city beaches.