Tracking down the Thresher Shark

Philippines, it is still dark when the boat is pushed off shore. After 30 minutes of sailing from the coast of Malapascua (a tiny island in the Philippines) the vessel arrives at the destination. The landscape has changed from a bright sky with an unforeseen amount of stars to a sunrise with a blanket of dark clouds. The calm sea has become restless and grim, but it has not stopped us before. No trace of land is seen on the horizon, but the trust of the divers is on the captain. Let’s gear up!

The Shark
The shark is known for its long tail, often being as long as the total upper body. The fin is used to attract and kill prey. It is a solitary creature, and found only in the warm oceanic currents, however can swim down to 350 meters and so is not a common shark.

The Dive
After descending to a maximum debt of 25 meters a platform appears, a   well-known cleaning place for the shark. The first glimpse of the sunrise is the only time that the sharks are visible, before they return into the deepest parts of the sea. The visibility is very poor and the current is strong. After a good half an hour it seems the energy being used under water is slowly becoming pointless and the early wake up a waste. Other than a sandstorm rushing over the seabed, and a single shrimp lost on the plane rocks, there is nothing to see.

Hanging low over the bottom the group sits down to stare into nothing when at once a monster appears. A machine thicker than a boxing bag and about two meters in length, circles right in front of our eyes. His glorious tale smoothly, slicing the through the current, as if it were a sword ready to be thrown into battle. The growling sounds he makes almost sounds frightening when you think of the speed this shark can attack you with, what little vision we have in the water and what camouflage a shark has in the water. By being able to see the shark up close, it was obvious by the shape and eyes of the shark that it was used to maximum debts of water. Hence why we could only see it in the early morning.

Unfortunately his curiousity had vanished and he disappeared. Our air had run low and it was time to re-surface.

What an adventure!

(The following video shows footage of the Thresher Shark from approximately 5 meters away, just before it disappeared.)

Thresher shark movement footage


2 thoughts on “Tracking down the Thresher Shark

  1. Pingback: The Great Summer Escape Pt. 1: Malapascua Island « The Chronic Vacacionista

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