Sea lion rushes freediver with jaws agape

sea lion rushes diver

A sea lion rushes a spearfisherman with its best imitation of “Jaws.” Photo is a screen grab from the video

Freediver Chris Okamoto was spearfishing for yellowtail kingfish off Santa Barbara Island, California, when a group of sea lions appeared out of nowhere, perhaps attracted by nearby baitfish.

One sea lion in particular apparently didn't appreciate Okamoto moving in on his territory because after making a few passes it decided to rush him with its best "Jaws" imitation. Okamoto caught the scary moment on video:

Fortunately this was a sea lion and not a shark.

"I was not hurt at all, just a bit shaken with it first occurred," Okamoto told Jukin Media. "I’ve had them do mock rushes before where they blow bubbles in your face, this one came much closer and as soon as it rushed towards me I swung the butt of my gun up and it stopped short.

"I wasn’t sure if it was going to rush me again so I swung the gun back up with the muzzle towards the group and they took off."

Much to Okamoto's relief.

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