Dramatic underwater footage captures the moment a Great White shark turns into a real-life Jaws – jumping out of the water to ravage tuna bait.
Known as ‘breaching’, the predatory behaviour mirrors the instinctive moves made when sharks attack seals.
The footage was shot by cinematographer Elke Specker during a five-day trip to Gaudaloupe island, Mexico – a well-known breeding ground for the fearsome shark.
‘I spent about six hours a day in shark cages for three days straight to capture the moment,’ recalls Elke. ‘Normally sharks only attack just below the surface. Food is the only way to bring them in close enough to be filmed. Chunks of tuna were tied to a rope and tossed in front of the cage.’
The filmmaker’s persistence paid off as the 15ft, 3,500lb male leapt majestically in full view of the cameras.
The dive marked Elke’s first time being up close and personal with a Great White – the largest predatory shark in existence.
‘It is awe-inspiring and quite intimidating coming face to face with them. You know your time could be up at any second, if they really wanted you,’ she says.
But despite the sharks’ immense power, the producer of ocean conservationist films is keen to make clear that we have no reason to fear them.
‘Great Whites may seem fierce, but humans are far more dangerous to them than they are to us,’ she insists.