Shark Chronicles 014 – Breach festival

Shark Chronicles 014 – Breach festival

Posted by Enrico Gennari on June 18, 2008

Watching a shark jumping completely out of the water in a full attack is impressive enough, but witnessing it, two days in a row, a few meters behind the boat was just stunning.


After a hard day work on photo ID and genetic sampling around Seal Island, the SAMPLA team decided to try observing a predatory event in different sectors around the island.

Around sunset, Stef pulled out our unlucky decoy, dubbed ‘Antonin’. We wished it luck as we tied it to the back of ‘Cheetah’, one of SAMPLA’s research vessels, and bid it farewell. Slowly, we made our way toward sector two (the seaward side of the island). Suddenly, with no warning and much anticipation, a shark carried ‘Antonin’ two meters in the air and then came crashing back into the water. ‘Antonin’ had seen better days and was a complete loss, so we packed up and started back to the harbour with the people who were lucky enough to see the breach still laughing and screaming, while Courtney showed off her incredible video of the breach. We were all still on cloud nine as we cleaned up ‘Cheetah’ and went back to the house.

The very next day, Ryan came by and collected all the people who were willing to go out for a full day of chumming. The boat was less full than the day before with only Courtney, Jonathon, Kimi, and Sophie. Again, after a full day work, Ryan decided to tow a decoy.

Just as we set our decoy free, a shark came to investigate, so our hopes were lifted as we slowly started moving again. Within minutes, a flurry of cameras went off as our unlucky decoy was launched meters into the air.

A white shark breaches out of the water at Seal Island, Mossel Bay.

Screams of surprise and joy followed as we reviewed the video and pictures that we managed to collect during the short two seconds that the shark was out of water, which will stay forever in our mind.

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