Boat­ies’ great sur­prise

Central Leader - - SITUATIONS VACANT - MATTHEWCATTIN

Great white shark sight­ings in the Hau­raki Gulf have made a splash on so­cial media.

Pos­si­bly the same shark gave at least two boats a cu­ri­ous once over on the north side of Whanga­paraoa penin­sula over the week­end.

A video posted to the Hibis­cus Coast Face­book page on Sun­day by Staffan Ljung­gren shows a ju­ve­nile great white ap­proach the back of a boat and lift its mouth out of the wa­ter to ‘smile’ at the cam­era.

The shark then rolls to ex­pose its side as it swims past, just inches from the boat.

The video has racked up over 30 thou­sand views, with some com­menters say­ing their swim- ming days are over for this sum­mer.

A sec­ond video was cap­tured by Julie Bluck in a fish­ing boat 400 me­tres off Stan­more Bay’s east­ern point show­ing pos­si­bly the same shark bit­ing down on a plas­tic berley bomb.

It also took a bite out of the boat’s fish­ing an­chor, which now has a few holes in it where the teeth have punc­tured.

A photo taken by Bluck shows a fish­ing hook in the cor­ner of its mouth, prov­ing its week­end en­coun­ters with fish­ing boats weren’t its first.

Ma­rine sci­en­tist and shark ex­pert Clin­ton Duffy says great white sight­ings are ‘‘quite a reg­u­lar thing’’ in the Hau­raki Gulf.

STAFFAN LJUNG­GREN

A still from the video up­loaded to Face­book by Staffan Ljung­gren.

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