September 3, 2008
Did ‘Jaws’ Surface Just Off Caldey Island?
COULD this be a great white shark emerging from the water just off the Welsh coast?
The terrifying picture (right) was shot by fisherman David John while on a fishing trip just 100 yards off the popular tourist destination of Caldey Island.
Mr John, 40, from nearby Manorbier, said he just happened to be taking pictures of his girlfriend on his mobile phone when what could be one of the sea's most feared predators leaped from the water.
And last night, marine experts refused to rule out the possibility that the creature, which kept a generation of swimmers out of the sea thanks to its portrayal in the film Jaws, had in fact made it to Welsh waters.
If authenticated, it would be the first ever recorded sighting of a great white in British waters.
"I thought it was a seal at first and snapped a picture," said Mr John.
"It was only later when I had a look I realised what it was.
"You can't mistake the shape of the head and can see an eye and the mouth. And from what I understand, great whites do break the water like this.
"It doesn't surprise me too much. I've lived in the area all my life and seen a lot of wildlife.
It would make sense, as there are plenty of seals for it to feed on."
Mr John said he showed the picture to a group of Irish fishermen in his mother's pub, The Castle Inn in Manorbier, who agreed it was the killer shark.
And Cliff Benson of Sea Trust said the possibility of it being a great white could not be ruled out, though it could also be the similar porbeagle shark or shortfin mako.
"It's entirely possible, though you would think it unlikely," said Mr Benson.
"There has never been an authenticated recorded sighting of one in British waters.
"But the sea here is warm enough for it to come here."
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