New footage of Deep Blue, one of the largest great white sharks ever recorded, has surfaced online, giving fans of the imposing fish another close-up view of her encounter with cage divers off the coast of Mexico.
The clip was filmed at Guadalupe Island, one of the world’s most notorious hotspots for white sharks. It was taken in 2013, during the same dive that produced the footage of Deep Blue which went viral when it was released online last year (eliciting no less than seven separate stories on the Inquisitr alone). Filmed by cameraman and experienced shark diver Michael Maier, this new angle on the encounter reveals heretofore unseen views of the stunning shark, which is thought to measure some 20-feet-long.
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Describing the footage, Maier recalled that the divers were forced to wait patiently for a shark to appear after entering the water. From within the safety of their protective cages, they watched the ocean’s depths, biding their time until one of the region’s multiple great whites made its presence known. When Deep Blue eventually arrived, the group was immediately aware that this was no normal shark.
“All of a sudden out of the deep blue, there she came. We realized almost immediately that she was very big.”
Despite the shark’s imposing size (and the great white’s undeserved reputation as a ferocious man-eater), Deep Blue appeared to remain both calm and curious about the divers, according to the Daily Mail. Though at one point in the clip the shark bites into the steel cage surrounding them, it isn’t a violent act, so much as an attempt by the animal to identify what she has encountered.
Lacking other tactile sensory organs, great white sharks will often examine their environment in this fashion, a tactic known as “sample biting” according to National Geographic. Unfortunately, this behavior can sometimes have catastrophic consequences for the animal or person that finds itself the center of the shark’s attention.
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As Deep Blue circled the divers, Maier recalls that the team got a unique impression of the shark’s true size. Despite the fact that she dwarfed them, Maier asserts that the divers felt well protected by the cages that separated them from the inquisitive predator.
“During the circles we realized just how big she was – she must have been something like seven meters long. Everything was very well prepared. The whole team felt safe. We had a very long beautiful dive with her and we were all very much enthusiastic about the encounter.”
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While Deep Blue is an unusually large shark, she is neither the biggest great white ever documented, nor alone in the annals of her species. As the Inquisitr recently reported, a white shark thought to be of similar length recently made headlines when it was spotted near the coast of Australia. Last year, reports of another massive white shark closed beaches in New South Wales for more than a week, and lifeguards acknowledged that an animal of that size had never before been observed in the region.
Reports of white sharks far in excess of Deep Blue’s length do exist in historical records, though they are impossible to verify. While no modern analogue to these specimens has ever been identified, white sharks in excess of 21 feet have from time to time been caught and reliably documented. Whether or not Deep Blue is the biggest great white shark currently swimming the seas, however, remains an unanswered question.