Shark Selfie: Diver Poses With Great White

An underwater cameraman recently took the selfie trend to a new level, leaning out of his protective cage to pose for a shot with a great white shark swimming behind him.

Dutch conservation photographer Peter Verhoog posed for the selfie off the coast of Guadeloupe, Mexico, in September, according to the Mirror. The 59-year-old, who is also a director at the Dutch Shark Society, leaned out of a dive cage to capture the image as an imposing great white swam in the background.

“I began making selfies with all kinds of sharks — mostly for fun,” he related. “Only later I realized that they could show people what sharks are like — when behaving normally, there is no danger.”

During three days of diving Verhoog only spotted four sharks, according to the Daily Mail, a fact that he attributes to warmer water temperatures caused by El Niño. Despite the predator’s imposing presence, Verhoog insists that the white shark posed little threat to him.

“People are not a prey for great white sharks — they feed on fish and marine mammals like seals. Furthermore, they are careful predators, and sometimes examine people by bumping into them, or taking a bite — the famous ‘mistaken identity.’ Then they let go — we are just not as fat and nourishing as a seal is. But a bite can be fatal. We are not on the menu, but we can be in the way.”

Earlier this month, a cage diver in South Africa captured a stunning image of a great white shark as it broke the water near her. The photo quickly went viral, as the Inquisitr noted, though the way in which the shark was baited to the cage caused controversy among some who believed the practice could be harmful to the great white. Professional bait handlers are employed to bring the sharks close to divers, though they work to prevent the animal from ever making contact with the cage.

White sharks were filmed earlier this year in the same region where Verhoog captured his selfie by researchers employing a robotic camera. Utilizing six GoPro cameras, scientists were able to record the sharks displaying territorial behavior, capturing footage of several predatory attacks.

Thanks to Mexico’s white sharks, Verhoog’s unique selfie is a photo that few other than thrill seekers will wish to recreate.

[Image: Peter Verhoog via the Daily Mail]