The video of a Guadalupe Island Shark Cage Entanglement has been released.
We first covered the incident October 14 in correlation with a great white shark cage breach.
The Guadalupe Island Shark Cage Entanglement incident happened around September 2.
A group with Bluewater Travel had a tense moment with a great white shark. The cage and four divers were around 35 deep when they were circled by a 13- to 15-foot (4.5m) long female great white shark. The shark approached the upper part of the cage, known as the balcony, and bit into the surfaced-supplied air system as it became entangled in the cage bars.
The divemaster was able to quickly turn on a reserve air system, but the shark was still mixed up in the bars.
“The shark swam vertically down into the balcony of the cage, made a sharp turn, and swam right through the bars of the cage. She thrashed around for several seconds and in the process got further lodged into the bars of the cage,” diver Katie Yonker wrote. She is director of operations for Bluewater.
The shark thrashed so hard, at one point, the cage was shifted to a 45 degree angle.
The divers, cage and stuck shark were all raised to the surface. The divers had to maneuver around the stuck shark to make it back onto the boat. After all the divers were back on the boat, several attempts were made to free the shark.
“The crew wasted no time trying to get the shark dislodged from the cage. After a few failed attempts, they tied a rope around her tail, lowered the cage back into the water, and tried to pull her out backward. Her gills were pressed against the cage bars, so divemaster Peter went into the cage and pressed on her gills, which freed the shark, and she swam away,” Yonker said.
According to Earth Touch News Network, the a bait bag had been tied to the cage and the shark was attempting to find the bag.
However, Bluewater owner Mike Lever said “The article in earthtouchnews.com was written by someone associated with the owners of the Solmar V. The assertions made in the article are incorrect and we believe, deliberately injurious to our reputation in an attempt to distract attention away from the horrifying incident on their own boat . . . we have very safe cages and run a very safe operation and have never had a problem with our cages.”
Baiting over (or on) a shark-diving cage is strictly prohibited in Guadalupe.
Keartes also noted some have suggested because chum bags simply hold bait, operators who use them are not explicitly feeding white sharks. See the 51-page Guadalupe shark-diving code of conduct, which was put in place by the National Commission of Natural Protected Areas (CONANP), one of the area’s ecotourism governing bodies.