A fishing group in Florida were in for a surprise when their fish was partially eaten by a great white shark (video below).
On Dec. 26, The Jacksonville Fishing Charters went on an excursion to bottom fish for red snapper. Per the current federal closure, all red snapper caught need to be released back into the wild, according to Captain Chad Starling on the fishing group's Facebook page.
However, during the Christmas holiday weekend trip, all but one of the fish were returned, the 25-pound red snapper that a great white shark decided to enjoy as a midday snack.
The entire incident was caught on video, uploaded to the Team Buck Rogers YouTube channel, and posted to the Jacksonville Fishing Charters Facebook page.
“Pics from the charter today,” read the caption of the Facebook album. “Quite an eventful day. We caught more red snapper than we could count, had a Mola Mola follow right behind the engines for 10-15 minutes, and oh yeah, the great white deal. Incredible day. It stands true; you never know what you will see when you're on the sea!”
As seen in the three-minute video, Starling was reeling in the fish as the shark approached them. Although great white sharks are not uncommon in Florida, sightings are pretty rare, according to The New Port Richey Patch.
The fishermen said that the red snapper was about 12 feet long. During the video, the shark swims towards the fish, circles the fishermen’s catch in the water and ultimately eats most of the red snapper after passing the boat a few times.
“He’s circling, he knows it’s his,” a fisherman says in the video. “He’s like, that’s mine.”
Great white sharks are the largest predatory fish in the world, according to National Geographic. They grow to be an average of 15 feet, although sharks that exceed 20 feet and weigh as much as 5,000 pounds have been recorded.
Approximately one-third to one-half of shark attacks annually are due to great white sharks. However, most of these assaults are not fatal.
Due to overfishing and accidental catching in gill nets, the great white shark is an endangered species.