Based on their reactions, many of them bleeped, fishermen in an 18-foot boat off South Australia couldn't believe what they were seeing: an estimated 15-foot great white shark circling their boat.
"It was circling and swimming slowly around the boat for at least 10 minutes, but it felt a lot longer," Darcy Russell, 20, told Caters News via the Mirror. "At one stage it started biting the motor at the back of the boat and chewing it – it left marks.
"It was banging the boat and hitting it with its tail. When it first approached it tried to bite the bag of bait."
Darcy and her cousin Andrew Russell, 31, captured video of Saturday's close encounter just a mile off the coast of Port MacDonnell. Caters posted their video, which contains nine expletives that are bleeped out:
Darcy, Andrew and Andrew's girlfriend and dad were fishing for gummy sharks and school sharks to eat, so they had a bait bag in the water to attract them.
They certainly weren't expecting to attract a great white shark, however.
"We were totally in shock, we couldn't believe what had just happened, it was crazy," Darcy said.
"It was just dangerous. If one of us had fallen in the water I don't think we would have had much chance. If it got hold of you, you would not last very long."
Darcy told Caters she wasn't scared, but shocked and excited, though there did seem to be some nervous laughter among the group.
"Dani was petrified," Darcy said of Andrew's girlfriend. "She has already said she will never go surfing in this area again."
Dani McKinnon admitted her concern, telling The Advertiser it was "just so big—it was like a bus."
"It nudged the boat a few times," she said. "It rocked a little bit [and] at one point Andrew said, 'Hold on' because it shook it. I was quite worried."
Darcy had always hoped to see a great white shark in the wild but never expected to see one this close up.
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