Watch the World’s Fastest Shark Zoom Past a Diver and Dominate a Marlin

Written by Angie Menjivar
Updated: August 30, 2023
© wildestanimal/
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Key Points

  • Mako sharks swim between 30-46 miles per hour.
  • Sharks are one of the main predators of marlin.
  • In this video, a man is in the water when a shark attacks a marlin, and he has to think fast to avoid being part of the shark’s snack.

The once-in-a-lifetime encounter captured in the video at the bottom of the page is a must-see. It’s one of those chance meetings that required the right place and the right time (not for the marlin, though!). Watch through the end to see how this diver manages to capture the moment and quickly escape from the attack!

How Fast Do Mako Sharks Swim?

A diver swimming with a Shortfin mako shark. These sharks are aggressive predators and should be avoided if possible.
Mako sharks are aggressive predators and should be avoided if possible.


The shortfin mako shark is revered for its unbelievable ability to reach top speeds underwater. It’s found throughout the world in warm, temperate environments, but on some occasions, it makes its way over to cooler waters. On average, it travels just over 30 miles per hour (MPH), but it can also travel as fast as 46 MPH! They use their speed as part of their hunting strategy, diving upward to tear chunks off the bodies of their prey (which includes tunas, mackerels, and swordfish).

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The Marlin’s Natural Predators

Black marlin
Marlins can grow to be quite large, up to 300 pounds, yet still are no match for a hungry, speedy mako shark.

©Al McGlashan/

Marlins are large and powerful fish that can grow up to 14 feet long and weigh over 1,500 pounds. As a result of their size and strength, marlins have very few natural predators in the ocean. However, there are some animals that may occasionally prey on these impressive creatures.

One of the most significant natural predators of marlins is sharks. Several species of shark, including great white sharks, tiger sharks, and bull sharks, are known to hunt marlins for food. These predators use their sharp teeth and powerful jaws to attack the marlin’s body or tail as it swims through the water.

Other potential predators of marlins include other large predatory fish such as swordfish or tuna. These species may compete with marlin for food sources, such as squid or smaller fish but generally do not actively seek out marlin as prey.

While they face relatively few natural threats from other animals in their environment, human activity poses a significant risk to these majestic creatures’ survival. Overfishing has drastically reduced the populations of many marine species worldwide, including those that make up the primary diet of larger predator fish like marlins.

Shark Zooms in to Attack a Marlin

Black marlin
Marlin are incredible creatures that are pretty good at defending themselves.


When the video starts, you see a montage of Al McGlashan’s aquatic adventures, appropriately titled “Big Fish, Small Boats.” He starts by explaining that he’s been fishing all his life and that nearly nothing surprises him, but the most terrifying moment for him was swimming with a 300-pound mako shark. Recounting the day, he shares everything was going to plan. He jumped in the water to film a marlin’s release, and it was perfect.

A couple of hours later, after lunchtime, they were back out again but struggling this time. When he jumped in the water, he realized that the fish had calmed down. He found it a little odd but didn’t pay too much mind. His plan was to identify the fish, but he wanted to get some photos of the large marlin against his boat first. At this point, things were moving along nicely again, so he swam up to get a final shot.

Suddenly, everything shifted. McGlashan felt a “whoosh” in the water and immediately started wondering what it was. It was a massive mako shark that had taken the opportunity to attack the marlin still hooked at the side of the boat. It started with a bite at the center of its body and then went closer to its tail. Once he got the marlin’s tail, it was a bloodbath. He kept filming, but he knew he had to get out of the water — and fast!

Click Below to Watch This Incredible Video!

Watch the bloodbath that ensues when a mako shark goes for a marlin’s tail.

The Featured Image

Short fin mako shark swimming just under the surface, about 50 kilometers off the Western Cape coast in South Africa.
Short fin mako shark swimming just under the surface, about 50 kilometers off the Western Cape coast in South Africa.
© wildestanimal/

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About the Author

Angie Menjivar is a quirky cat mom with a love for books, thunderstorms, and comfy couches where she cozies up with her laptop to write her heart out. Her writing style combines engaging storytelling, vivid imagery, emotional resonance, and educational depth to create a compelling and informative reading experience for readers like you! Her passion and humor stamp her work with a voice all her own and her sense of wonder creates a fantastical narrative that allows you to explore the fascinating world of wildlife through new eyes.

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