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Shark in Cape Cod attack was great white, officials confirm

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FILE 2002: Authorities have determined that the man who suffered leg injuries while swimming off the coast of Cape Cod last month was bitten by a great white shark. (Reuters)

Fisheries officials in Massachusetts determined Wednesday that the swimmer who suffered shark bites off the coast of Cape Cod last month was attacked by a great white shark.

Officials came to the conclusion after examining the bite marks on Christopher Myers, who suffered injuries on the lower part of both legs.

Earlier, shark expert Gregory Skomal, of the state Department of Fish and Game's Division of Marine Fisheries, told the Cape Cod Times that the bite was likely the work of a great white shark after reviewing witness descriptions of the fin, the presence of seals and the extent of the injury.

Great white shark sightings have increased off the coast of Massachusetts in the last several years, the newspaper reports, and state researchers have been monitoring and tagging the sharks since 2009. White sharks feed on seals and sea lions, and their migration to the state's coastal waters is linked to the growing number of gray seals that migrate here annually, state officials said. Great white sharks grow to about 20 feet in length, can weigh up to 3 tons and live for more than 30 years.

The last confirmed injury in Massachusetts by a great white shark occurred in 1936, state officials said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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