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Old 01-21-2019, 05:31 PM   #1
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Eibwen's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Dunedin
Posts: 157
Wintertime reading - Swimming w/ great white

I'll leave this type of diving to others

Divers in Hawaii may have been swimming with biggest great white shark on record

Perhaps the last thing you want to see while in the ocean is a great white shark. For divers in Hawaii, it may have been an incredible discovery.

A group of divers near Oahu were monitoring tiger sharks feeding off a decomposed sperm whale when they encountered a giant great white shark Tuesday, reports The Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Ocean Ramsey, one of the divers who studies sharks, told The Star-Advertiser that, based on the shark's size and markings, the shark may be Deep Blue, one of the largest great whites on record.

"Iím without words; itís heartwarming; sheís probably the most gentle great white Iíve ever seen," Ramsey told The Star-Advertiser.

On Sunday, diver and photographer Kimberly Jeffries said she was one of two divers first in the water with a giant great white shark. According to Jeffries, marine experts familiar with the shark reviewed her photos and confirmed it was Deep Blue.

"It was an absolutely breathtaking experience, and really quite humbling to be in the presence of this great shark," said Jeffries. "She is an absolutely beautiful and magnificent being that both commands and deserves respect."

Jeffries said pictures were taken of the shark and consulted against a database to confirm Deep Blue's identity. Jeffries said the shark was confirmed as Deep Blue by the Marine Conservation Science Institute, a nonprofit group focused on conserving marine resources, and shark photographer George Probst, who runs the website Sharkpix.com.

Probst said to identify the shark, he looked at its countershading pattern, which is basically where the gray color of the top of a shark's body meets with the white underside. "Thatís as unique to a white shark as our fingerprints are," he said.

A 2014 feature on Deep Blue created by Discovery said the shark is the largest great white ever filmed, measuring more than 20 feet and believed to be at least 50 years old. The Smithsonian says the average female great white shark measures between 15-16 feet, while males measure between 11-13 feet.

As he compared the photos to screengrabs with the Discovery video, Probst discovered the markings matched Deep Blue.

"I was shocked," Probst said.

Jeffries said that because of its impressive girth, the shark was probably pregnant. On Wednesday, diver Mark Mohler and Jeffries posted images of the shark on social media.

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