A filmmaker off Western Australia has captured vivid footage of a great white shark investigating him so closely, multiple times, that viewers can detect the blue in the predator’s eye and the many scars on its face.
Ashley Gibb, who was snorkeling with a great white shark for the first time, told ABC News Australia that the “very intense” encounter occurred off a remote beach near Esperance.
Gibb implied that he was initially bumped from behind by the large shark, as he followed a colorful fish with his camera. Viewers of the YouTube video can see when the bump occurs, at 26 seconds.
After that, the shark enters the picture and repeatedly circles, ventures out and back toward Gibb, as if wondering what to make of the intruder.
Gibb maintained a steady hand throughout the encounter. Afterward, he told ABC News, “I reminded myself of my belief about sharks, which is the fact that they don’t eat humans on purpose. We’re not their food.
“I think that’s sort of what got me through a lot of nerves, because it was very intense…. Even though I wanted to go and do that, it was a very tensing situation.”
The budding filmmaker added: “The biggest thing for me was just focusing on my breathing. I didn’t want to show that I was scared.”
Great white sharks, which typically ambush prey when feeding, will bump and even bite objects as an investigatory technique when they’re curious or excited by scent.
Gibb, who lives in Kalgootrlie, said he had heard of great white sharks being spotted off the beach near Esperance. He plans to use the footage in an upcoming documentary.