Divers come face-to-face with five killer sharks off Cornwall coast
This is the breathtaking moment a trio of divers have a close encounter with a group of killer sharks – off Britain.
The amazing encounter happened five miles off Land's End between diver Charles Hood and two colleagues and five blue sharks.
The ferocious creatures are among the world's widest ranging sharks and have been known to attack humans with four known fatalities.
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Experienced diver Mr Hood set out to try and see one this summer after hearing local fishermen say they'd seen them off Cornwall.
He said: "It was very special. I've only ever seen blue sharks off Cornwall once before – years ago. These were between five and seven feet long. We tied some mackerel to a rope – without hooks – to try and lure them. And then they appeared. I think there were five different sharks in total.
"We had two separate encounters in the space of two hours with one and two sharks at a time. They kept coming back but I think there could have been five separate sharks over the space of the two hours – which is incredible. It was fantastic to see them.
"Maybe it means their populations are recovering.
"We were thrilled to see them anyway."
Possibly the widest ranging of all sharks in the eastern Atlantic, the Blue Shark is found from Norway to South Africa and is a pelagic, oceanic species.
Tag and recapture studies have shown that a regular clockwise trans-Atlantic migration occurs, following the major currents.
It appears that blue sharks tagged off the east coast of the USA follow the Gulf Stream to Europe, ride various currents south along the coasts of Europe and Africa and then follow the Atlantic North Equatorial Current to the Caribbean.
Globally, an estimated 20 million blue sharks are taken in commercial long-line and drift-net fisheries each year, mainly as by-catch.