bluetopaz asked in SportsSwimming & Diving · 9 years ago

Has anyone ever had an encounter with a shark while swimming in the ocean?

If you did, please explain in detail what happened and how you managed to escape. Also, how deep was the water that you were in?


5 Answers

  • 9 years ago
    Favourite answer

    I have been on scuba hundreds of times with sharks, as well as swimming in the ocean or snorkeling with them around.

    Mostly, they are just like any other fish: minding their own business, looking for food. If something they don't care for (like humans) comes too close to them, they move away.

    Being around them when blood is in the water is not a big deal. In Honduras, I participated in a scuba-based shark feeding. The outfitter took a five gallon bucket of fish parts to the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico in about 40 or 50 feet of water while 12 or so divers watched from 15 or 20 feet away. As soon as the sealed bucket was opened, a lot of reef sharks swam in for a nibble of the fish. One shark bumped my arm in the frenzy, but only because two other sharks unexpectedly pushed him (or her?) out of the way. We were advised to keep arms and fingers close to our bodies to minimize the possibility of them being mistaken for a dead fish part. It had been a long time since there was an incident, even though they do this one or two times per day—for many years.

    The most unexpected encounter I had was entering a shipwreck, which was mostly a hull, in the Florida Keys and not completely submerged, so the sun caused the water inside to be very warm, like 95°F/35°C which apparently about 500 nurse sharks were attracted to. As soon as I went in, they all decided they wanted out. It seemed they were rushing me, but in fact they were trying to go around me. Once I lay flat outside the opening, they quickly all vanished. Their lack of displacement induced a brief current which washed me into the wreck. This was about five feet of water.

    Near Darwin Island, in the Galapagos is well-named Shark Alley. Every time of the dozen or so times I have been there I see anywhere from 1200 to 3000 sharks hanging out a foot or two above the white sandy bottom at about 90 or 100 feet deep in usually chilly water. I think these were six gill, mostly in the six to eight foot long range. They didn't move when I swam to them and photographed with a flash camera or shot video, at least until I got very close, like four feet away. Then they would move away a tiny bit.

    The most exciting encounter I had was meeting a white tip reef shark off Vancouver Island (Barkley Sound) in low visibility water about 70 feet deep. He became boxed in a depression in rock reef, and I blocked off his exit when he first saw me. He swam vigorously one direction, stopped short of one rock, then went the other way. He was moving so fast, I popped up five or eight feet with excitement, and then he swam underneath and to open water.

    If your source of information about shark behavior is the mass media, you have been seriously miseducated. Of the 300 known species of sharks, only four have been known to attack humans, and most of those which were not provoked are thought to be cases of mistaken identity. That is, humans were acting like dying prey in murky conditions.

    Source(s): thousands of scuba dives thousands of hours swimming and snorkeling in oceans
    • Commenter avatarLog in to reply to the answers
  • Doug
    Lv 5
    9 years ago

    How did I manage to "escape"? I continued to dive as normal, and exited the water according to my original plan. I am just upset that the shark didn't stick around for longer.

    I have been diving with sharks from 20 feet deep to 130 feet deep. There have been dives (Galapagos Islands) that I stopped counting the sharks in a single school when I reached 100, and those were the sharks that I could see.

    • Commenter avatarLog in to reply to the answers
  • archon
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    There are sharks interior the SF bay and individuals have been attacked till now. via fact of this while swim golf equipment and such that swim from Alcatraz to the shore many times have spotters in boats inclusive of them. I even understand a individual who have been given bit on the top and face from an incredible white shark some years in the past. he became into abalone diving north of San Francisco.

    • Commenter avatarLog in to reply to the answers
  • 9 years ago

    don't worry about sharks. I just went to the abaco's in the bahamas and dove with 8 to 10 foot reef sharks. They were around 20 to 40 feet and they notice you but just continue swimming on. As a matter of fact if you go after them they swim away the only time you actually have to worry is when there is blood around, i know it sounds cliche but it is actually true. Don't worry about it. they don't care for you

    Source(s): went diving with them less then a week ago
    • Commenter avatarLog in to reply to the answers
  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • 9 years ago

    i have. it was deep water, maybe 20,30 feet. it wasn't a huge shark, but it was big enough to where it could injure me badly. all i did was start swimming back. i panicked and dove underwater to swim faster, but that made things worse, and the shark launched toward me, i was lucky because it didnt grab my entire leg, just my foot. i just poked its eyes and punched its nose, then it let go and i swam back to shore. but getting attacked by a shark is a once in a lifetime thing. they dont eat humans, they only attack because they mistake us for something else, like a seal. so you dont have to worry about sharks.

    • Commenter avatarLog in to reply to the answers
Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.