Diver and Tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) subsurface female, Mayotte
Gabriel Barathieu / Biosphoto
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Image size: 7000x4669 pixels (23.3"x15.6" @300dpi)
Shooting date : 2023-10-09
An image can be misleading if you don't know the context in which it was taken! That's why I hesitated to publish it. A little explanation is in order! When you see this photo, you naturally think that this tiger shark is about to attack this diver and tear him apart in just two bites. But that's not the case at all! "Don't be affraid" is what I call this photo, not so much for the diver (who certainly had a bit of a scare), but above all for the tiger shark, because it was clearly the one who was most frightened at that precise moment. Indeed, just before this encounter with this magnificent shark, we were observing a rare group of a dozen orcas off Mayotte when, to our great surprise, this tiger shark appeared out of nowhere and took refuge next to the boats in the immediate vicinity of the orcas! For more than 20 minutes, with its mouth wide open (but without any sign of aggression), it wandered around the divers and the boats while the orcas moved away from the area. Two days later, this same group of killer whales was filmed devouring another tiger shark over 3m long. Taking refuge near humans certainly contributed to its survival!