Shark diving isn’t exactly the most mass-appealing activity to take part in. It’s quite literally an activity you’ll either hate or love, mainly due to the fact you’re usually locked inside a cage with sharks swarming around you.
Not exactly the most relaxing experience.
However, for the adrenaline junkies and shark diving enthusiasts, this is a dream come true. Sharks are wonderful creatures, they dominate our seas and hold the title as king of the food chain throughout our planet’s waters.
Here at Oyster, we seek to break the stereotype surrounding the fear of diving with sharks in the UK. If all the necessary safety regulations are in place, then there is really no need to fear diving with these magnificent beasts.
However, obviously, sharks aren’t exactly the most placid of creatures. In fact, part of the reason people enjoy shark diving is because of the fear factor. Part of what makes our job fun is the element of surprise, knowing that we may encounter a shark during our dive makes it all the more exciting!
So, with that in mind, (and not trying to put you off shark diving) here are the most notorious sharks currently dominating our seas!
7. Basking Shark - Scotland, Channel Islands
Basking sharks may look terrifying, but in reality, they’re actually one of the more placid sharks in the UK waters. Known as the ‘gentle giants’ of the shark world, is the second largest fish on the planet. They can grow up to 27ft in length and weigh around 2,200 kg. They’re very slow swimmers, averaging 2.5mph as they bask around in the sun. Due to their immense size, they don’t have many predators, aside from Killer Whales, Great Whites, and humans. Shark diving in Scotland is your best bet if you’re look to catch a glimpse of one of these colossal creatures, and we offer this service!
6. Blue Shark - South Coast, Cornwall, England
One of our customer’s most favoured diving areas, and ranks 4th in the best UK diving locations of 2017! The Blue Shark is a very elegant shark, it’s aerodynamic body shape allows it to effortlessly manoeuvre around the ocean with ease. Their size ranges from around 3.6-4 metres and they’re mainly known for their large eyes and pointy nose. They’re not known for being a threat to fishing areas or humans generally, so if you find yourself shark diving in the UK and coming across one of these, don’t worry! While they usually dominate tropical waters, they have been known to sneak into British waters when the climate suits them.
5. Oceanic White-Tip Shark - Cornwall
Quite the excitable fish, and one that has been seen hovering around the British Isles, despite preferring the open ocean waters. These can be quite aggressive sharks, and at 7-foot long, you don’t want to aggravate it! These sharks are believed to be responsible for the deaths of over 800 sailors from the SS Indianapolis, eating the survivors of shipwrecks and plane crashes surrounding the tropical oceans of the world. While only a few sightings have been recorded in the UK, (as these sharks are not native to the UK) they are frequently seen in the Bay of Biscay – which is only 200 miles from where a few have been seen in Britain.
4. Angel Shark - Bristol Channel, Cardigan Bay
Arguably the most common shark in UK waters, this sly shark lies on the seabed and waits for its unsuspecting prey to almost walk into its mouth. There is a total of 22 species of the Angel Shark, and they’re now one of the most endangered species of sharks, according to E-Life Sciences. They’re usually spotted within the Bristol Channel, and our advice is to avoid stepping on them, as they can deliver quite a nasty bite if you aggravate them!
3. Nurse Shark - English Channel
This is another warm water fish that has somehow made the UK its second home. Its natural habitat lies within the Atlantic Ocean, and they usually prefer shallow waters, between 9-10 feet in depth. By day, they sleep under rocks, caverns and reefs, and when night approaches, they come out to feed. If you’re shark diving in the UK, don’t be surprised if you bump into one these, they’re not the most common shark, but sighting numbers have risen over the past few years.
2. Sharpnose Sevengill Shark - Ireland, Cornwall
These top the ‘most vicious’ list of sharks in the UK. Thriving in the deep sea, these sharks grow to a maximum of 5ft, and do regularly seem to stray into shallow waters. However, surprisingly, they do not pose a threat to humans due to their diminutive nature, though, their bite is incredibly nasty, so avoid them if you can!
The Sharpnose has been sighted off the coast of Ireland and again in Cornwall.
1. Shortfin Mako Shark - Sussex, Wales
Britain’s most unwanted summer visitor, the Mako appears along the south coast of Britain, Brighton and Wales being the most recent of sightings. Arguably the most dangerous shark in the UK, the Mako can grow up to 10 metres and makes most of the top 10 ‘most dangerous sharks’ list. Mako Sharks have been held responsible for 12 unprovoked attacks on humans, 3 of which proved fatal. Due to the Mako favouring large, open sea waters, it rarely ever finds its way to Britain. Though, during warmer temperatures, Mako Sharks have been spotted in UK waters, most commonly in the south coast. This however, is very rare. Diving with sharks should be a fun and adrenaline-filled experience. At Oyster, we guarantee you’ll be in safe hands, and we boast some of the most phenomenal shark diving experiences within the UK. So, what are you waiting for? See what diving trips we have in store this summer!