If you enjoy snorkeling and diving, and you are seeking an adrenaline-pumping adventure, then why not consider swimming with sharks around Great Exuma?
Getting up-close to these amazing creatures is an unforgettable experience. A single diving trip may introduce you to dozens of sharks in a single day.
REASONS TO CONSIDER SWIMMING WITH SHARKS IN THE BAHAMAS
The waters around the Bahamas are rich in many different types of sharks, and these beautiful creatures are now surprisingly diver-friendly.
Initially, sharks would vanish when they saw air bubbles rising from scuba divers’ regulators. However, since shark diving was introduced in the Bahamas, sharks have gradually overcome their initial fear. This fact does not mean that they are more aggressive to divers. It simply increases your chances of seeing sharks up-close on an exciting dive.
The best place to find a variety of sharks is around the coast where the shallower waters meet the deeper waters in Exuma, New Providence and Abaco. Sharks are good to have around, as they pick off any sick fish before they can affect others, maintaining good health within the ecosystem.
One reason why swimming with sharks is promoted in the Bahamas is to educate visitors about the threats these creatures are facing due to over-fishing. Laws now protect the sharks with no fishing zones around the established feeding sites. In Asia, the market for shark fin soup has led to widespread poaching. Often, their fins are removed and the rest of the fish discarded.
Sharks take many years just to reach sexual maturity and their young have a low survival rate. Unfortunately, their overall population is in serious decline, making an up-close experience even more memorable.
IS SWIMMING WITH THE SHARKS OF THE BAHAMAS REALLY SAFE?
Although sharks are some of nature’s most efficient killing machines, sharing the ocean with them is safe if sensible precautions are taken and rules are obeyed.
Supervised diving expeditions are the safest way to take part in this exciting activity. They provide coordinated shark feeding using dead fish scraps held in a flip-top box and a long spear to put the food into the water away from participants.
Sharks are quickly attracted by the smell of food, even underwater, and soon a “shiver” of sharks (the collective name) will take turns to feed, often clipping the humans with their tails as they swim quickly past! As you can imagine, the whole experience is one of apprehension, excitement and exhilaration as you enter the water and take part in this amazing encounter.
Although it sounds risky and dangerous, swimming with sharks is relatively safe if sensible precautions are taken. The vast majority of attacks occur when divers are spearfishing. You should also never touch or grab hold of a shark, or attempt to feed one by hand.
TYPES OF SHARKS AROUND GREAT EXUMA
The ocean around Great Exuma supports plenty of marine life, including many different sharks. These waters are home to the following species:
– Nurse Sharks
– Black Tip Sharks
– Bull Sharks
– Tiger Sharks
– Great Hammerheads
– Scalloped Hammerheads
– Caribbean Reef Sharks
– Lemon Sharks
– Silky Sharks
– Whale Sharks
– Blacknose Sharks
– Sandbar Sharks
Of course, you will also encounter many other marine creatures. It is a fantastic and memorable way to see exotic underwater life in its natural environment.
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