The sighting of a great white shark off La Jolla on Monday afternoon prompted a swimming ban at La Jolla Shores beach, at least until Tuesday morning.
The shark, spotted about 50 yards from shore by a lifeguard, was estimated to measure 14 feet. That suggests it's either a large juvenile or young adult.
Contrary to popular belief, white sharks are not uncommon off Southern California.
Juvenile white sharks utilize Southland waters as a feeding area, and anecdotal evidence suggests that more adult sharks s may spend time in the region because of an abundance of sea lions as a food source.
La Jolla is popular among swimmers, surfers and scuba divers. La Jolla Cove is frequented by harbor seals and sea lions, which are a tourism attraction.
In August of 2010 lifeguards at La Jolla Shores posted warnings after the sighting of a 15- to 20-foot white shark. That estimate was based on the size of the predator's dorsal fin.