CBSN

Great white shark pings off New Jersey, "moving with purpose"

BRIGANTINE, N.J. -- She's back.

Mary Lee, the 3,456-pound female great white shark whose movements are tracked online, has surfaced off the New Jersey shore.

The shark has traveled almost 20,000 miles since she was tagged with an electronic tracker off Cape Cod, Massachusetts, in 2012 by OCEARCH. The nonprofit ground researches sharks.

"I think the most exciting thing about what's going on with her moving northbound across Jersey right now is that she is just about to complete the first documented three-year full migratory loop of a North Atlantic white shark," Chris Fisher, founder of OCEARCH, told CBS Radio station 1010 WINS. "In that full migratory pattern is the mating site, the birthing site, and her full migratory range."

Mary Lee has been heading up the East Coast. Earlier this month, she was off of the Virginia-Maryland coast and in April, she was off North and South Carolina.

By Friday morning, the tracker placed the 16-foot shark 10 to 15 miles off Brigantine.

"She's several miles off the beach and she seems to be moving with purpose," Fisher said. "Over the last 24-hours she's traveled over 100 miles northbound; in the last three days she's moved 200 miles to the north."

"She's just doing her thing, trying to get back to Cape Cod to mate," he added.

People can track Mary Lee at ocearch.org or on Twitter.