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Shark Dive in the Exumas Bahamas

While on a recent trip to the Exumas in the Bahamas, I had the opportunity to swim with a lot of interesting creatures. We were there doing a story on the invasive Lion Fish and how they are often taking over many reefs of the Caribbean. They eat 4 times their weight per day and have a seriously negative effect on all the reefs they inhabit. They consume many juvenile fish, lobsters, crabs and other critters who use the reef as a nursery.

We pulled up to the first spot and the researcher I was with (working at the Cape Eleuthera Institute) peered into the water and stated: “oh good, our friends are here” To which I thought she was speaking of the lion fish.

Nope… we slipped into the water and were immediately greeted by a great number of caribbean reef sharks. Krista looked me over to ensure I was going to be okay and we then defended into their home.

The sharks didn’t really pay any attention to us until we started spearing lion fish. Trace amounts of blood in the water turned these regularly docile creatures into crazed speed demons. They were searching frantically for the source of the blood (which was neatly tucked into a sealed plastic bag for research back at the lab). It got to the point that the sharks were looking to us as the source of the blood coming ever closer with each circle. They would come within reach and then spook away. It was fascinating to see their behaviour change in the face of a possible meal.