The full video is an advert for an underwater camera but still, the freediver has some serious nerves of steel. I went into a shark cage off of Gansbaai, South Africa, but never ventured out of it while viewing great white sharks.
Surprisingly enough, the great whites were spooked by the air bubbles from (diving) tanks during the summer season so if you wanted them to come around, you couldn’t use air. I was told that you could only do this in the winter when the seas were calm and clear. The summer water is cold enough, so I can’t even imagine going in during the winter.
There is a local guy there who is well known for freediving with the great whites and he hasn’t had any problems that I know of. As much as I loved seeing the sharks up close, I have to say, I had a pretty strange vibe from some of the operations that ran the tours, and I wouldn’t do it again nor recommend it.
The islands where they take you are full of seals on the surface, which is a favorite food of the sharks. On the ocean floor are abalone, which sells for a premium price in Asia, so there were plenty of stories about illegal poachers working those grounds at night. It’s dangerous work (sharks, not to mention the police), but highly profitable.
This freediver is certainly not afraid to get up close and personal with a great white. As cool as it is to watch, I have no plans to try this anytime soon.
And to prove that there are more people with nerves of steel, here’s another freediver (video below) who films the great whites in hopes of improving their image. In all fairness to the great whites, they do have many more reasons to be afraid of humans than humans have to be afraid of them.
Here’s a few screen shots, then the video:
About 3 minutes into the video, one great white makes a run at the cameraman in order to taste his air tank: