A rare look beneath the Southern California waves shows young great whites in action.
Shot on June 26 at Sunset Beach in Orange County, the video was made by Courtney Hemerick and Joseph Truckles, who remained calm through the experience.
“The sharks in the video are probably checking the paddlers out, with a level of curiosity but also a level of caution because they don’t know what they are looking at,” says Gregory Skomal, a senior marine fisheries scientist and shark expert with the state of Massachusetts.
Since the animals often do feast on floating carcasses, they might have initially been attracted to the shapes at the surface. But such sharks “are very unlikely to bite,” says Skomal.