Great White Leaps from the Water to Catch This Bird in Wild Video

Written by Angie Menjivar
Updated: July 10, 2022
Image Credit Alexyz3d/Shutterstock.com
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Key Points:

  • Great white sharks will often leap from the water, or ‘breach’ in order to catch prey that is moving quickly
  • Sometimes sharks can jump with so much force they launch 10 or more feet in to the air, which is incredible when you consider they can grow beyond 2 tons, with some great whites recorded growing even larger.
  • Sea birds are a part of great white shark’s diet, albeit a rare and less common one than seals, crustaceans, and other sharks

When you’re on a shark tour out of Port Lincoln, Australia, you expect to see sharks. A shark fin swirling about wouldn’t be a huge surprise since that’s exactly what you’re looking for.

But what onlookers didn’t expect to witness this day as they were out on tour with Calypso Star Charters is the shocking moment when a great white shark lunges out of the water to feast on an unsuspecting petrel bird.

The video opens with a shot of the water and some rocky land off in the distance. Shark fins can be seen peeking out of the water on the center left of the camera frame, several yards from a petrel bird that’s floating atop the water.

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As the shark approaches the bird (which has apparently been enjoying a few pieces of tuna used as shark bait), the bird notices and flies off a few feet away, its feet pitter-pattering on the water.

The crowd can be heard murmuring in the background as the shark approaches the bird. They’re not sure if the great white might attack—but they just keep their eyes glued to the scene. They let out a few laughs and giggles as they notice how the petrel bird nonchalantly gets away.

The shark turns around and heads back for the bird and a man behind the camera can be heard tsking, knowing that the bird is still in danger. Once again, the bird spots the shark and flies a bit higher and a bit further away this time to keep itself safe.

The video cuts to another moment of the same scene—the petrel bird is enjoying itself, floating on the water, facing to the right. From behind the bird, you can see the great white launch toward the bird as spectators bellow in surprise.

Commotion can be seen in the water but it’s not apparent yet what has occurred. As you see the shark’s tail splash into the water, you can make out the wings of the bird, just above the splashes. It’s attempting to fly away but it appears the shark has managed to capture its legs between its powerful jaws.

The bird continues to struggle as the crowd murmurs and shouts in disbelief. The video cuts again to a scene where the bird is closer to the boat and some chum appears to be gliding along the water attached to a string just in front of the boat.

Suddenly, the great white shark lunges out of the water—as if in a scene out of a movie—its mouth gaping open, ready to snatch the bird in one fell swoop. It succeeds and the shark can be seen chomping down on the bird, with the bird’s wing hanging out of the shark’s mouth.

The shark dives back into the water with bird and all as the crowd exclaims in surprise, amusement, and horror. A big splash can be seen and heard as the shark swims away from the boat. Onlookers return to gratified, animated expressions as they process the shocking moment they just witnessed.

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Ready for more shark encounters? Check out the videos below!

See A Surfer Narrowly Survive A Shark Attack During Competition – Surfing huge waves is dangerous enough. Imagine being this close to a shark attack!

See The 21-Foot Shark That May Be The Largest Great White Shark on Record – Great white sharks are enormous predators, and this one may be the biggest ever.

Watch A Great White Shark Casually Swim Up A Massachusetts Salt Pond – Seeing a great white shark in the ocean is scary enough, imagine spotting one swimming up a local salt pond where it doesn’t belong.

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About the Author

Angie is a writer with over 10 years of experience developing content for product and brand reviews, focusing much of her time on animals of all types. A cat owner herself, she enjoys writing articles on beloved pets that both inform and entertain her audience.