Swimming with killer sharks 50ft beneath the Atlantic Ocean is a risky business for even the most adrenaline-crazed professional junkie, but for a young woman armed with nothing but a skimpy bikini and a heart full of good intentions, it just seems plum crazy.
Yet 38-year-old Hannah Fraser is no half-baked lunatic with a death wish the size of Texas. The plucky model made the choice to dance with death and swim with sharks for a very good reason.
Despite being all too aware of the dire consequences of what swimming with sharks can do to a person, Hannah took the plunge into the big blue just off the coast of Bahamas to swim with a shoal of the most dangerous sharks in the world.
Why? Because Hannah believes tiger sharks suffer from a bad reputation and hopes that because these 16-foot monsters of the deep didn’t eat her alive as soon as look at her, the public at large will change their perception of these predatory sharks.
Due to finning and fishing by humans, tiger sharks are a threatened species. Over 100 million sharks are killed by humans every year, compared with the estimated five shark fatalities suffered by humans worldwide each year.
By spending time with sharks in their natural habitat and having the entire encounter filmed by Emmy award-winning cinematographer for an upcoming documentary entitled Tears Of A Mermaid, Hannah hopes to stop the needless culling and global slaughter of all sharks.
Hannah told the Daily Mail:
“Many people have asked me why I would put my life on the line to do this, especially for dangerous predatory sharks. I feel that all animals play an essential role in keeping our ocean ecosystems in balance.
“We humans have a history of annihilating anything we see as a competition, so much so that we are now threatening our very existence on this planet. I advocate for greater understanding and awareness for all sea creatures, and hope to inspire people to see that sharks, despite being one of the world’s most effective predators, are also intelligent, and magnificent animals worthy of protection.
“We are currently killing over 100million sharks per year, whereas there are only five reported human fatalities by sharks per year worldwide. Who are the real dangerous predators in this equation?”
Despite her obvious passion for sharks, Hannah is not one to underestimate or romanticize their lethal nature. During her time swimming with the sharks, Hannah had to stay in perpetual motion or the massive underwater garbage disposals would have attacked and eaten her whole.
Prior to her date with the sharks, Hannah, who can hold her breath for up to two minutes and swim to depths of 45 feet, trained vigorously in both an emotional and vigorous sense to prepare herself fully for her great aquatic adventure.
Before her meet and greet with the underwater killers on the sandy seabed, the LA model bid a fond farewell to her family in case it all went pear-shaped beneath the waves and she never saw them again.
“I was feeling very anxious the first time I got in the water with the tiger sharks. The most important aspect was knowing how their minds worked, finding out what triggered them to use their mouths and teeth to inspect or react to situations and how to avoid doing any of those actions or movements.
“We avoided wearing anything light colored because that may catch their eye and look like a little fish, causing them to bite by accident. I learned how to touch them in the right way to allow a connection that they felt comfortable with.”
As Hannah twirls and dances on the bottom of the ocean like a Disney ballerina, the killer sharks seem oblivious, or perhaps indifferent to her presence. Yet during her underwater visit and swim with the sharks, Hannah found out one peculiarly interesting fact.
Tiger sharks love to have their noses tickled!
[Image Via Vimeo/Shawn Heinrichs]