Graceful. Peaceful. Beautiful. It’s the exact message free diver Ocean Ramsey wants to convey about the great white shark, that it has a gentler side than one often depicted in Hollywood movies. And what better way to get your message across than to swim with the apex predator. Well, not just swim with a great white shark, but grab hold of its dorsal fin and take a ride. In the interest of conservation, Ramsey calmly hitches a ride with a great white shark. Watch:
The video of Ramsey, a shark conservation advocate in Hawaii, was shot off the coast of Mexico, according to The Daily Telegraph. After observing from a cage for two days, Ramsey swam into open water and joined the shark in footage that seems to be getting a lot of attention lately, though similar videos surfaced last year and in years past.
“The goal was to go and find some great white sharks and collect video footage of their natural behavior, but also, if the opportunity arose and the conditions were right, to actually interact with them,” Ramsey told The Daily Telegraph in an interview this week.
“We wanted to show that this is what they’re really like–not the Hollywood movie where you put a drop of blood in the water and the animals go crazy…
“There is an instinctive fear, knowing what the animals are capable of, but it’s hard to describe what it’s like to be in the presence of such a magnificent animal. I felt extremely privileged to have such a close encounter.”
Some are calling Ramsey the shark whisperer. Others are calling her crazy.
One expert told The Daily Telegraph that Ramsey was taking a calculated risk.
More from The Daily Telegraph:
Sydney Sea Life Aquarium aquarist Amy Wilkes said that swimming with great white sharks was clearly a dangerous proposition.
“It is risky–she is swimming with a very large predator, but the important thing to remember is that sharks are not always swimming around, trying to eat people,” Ms. Wilkes said. “She has gone to a great deal of effort to avoid threatening behavior or scaring the sharks, so it’s a calculated risk.”
Ramsey, a former marine park sharks curator who has also swum with tiger sharks and bull sharks in Australia and the South Pacific, said she had years of experience interacting with the animals and reading their body language and behavior.
“I wouldn’t recommend or encourage people go out and go free diving with these animals,” she said.
“They are wild animals and they need to be respected as an apex predator–they can only ever be so predictable.”
So, please, do as she says, not as she does.