Playful great whites makes shark cage diving fun


A great white shark glides past the boat.

Our sleepy morning guests may wonder how the ASEC crew members are able to motivate themselves to work at 6 am each morning. For me, beautiful days like today make the early mornings worthwhile.

The water was incredibly still as we bobbed about under a lovely False Bay sunrise, waiting for the great white sharks to hunt. The hunting activity was fairly quiet, but we did see a wonderful aerial breach on a group of seals and a breach on another boat’s decoy.

We then anchored for a morning of epic shark cage diving. We saw sharks from quite a range of sizes, from 2.5 m to 4.5 m. At Seal Island we rarely see great whites greater than 5 m or less than 2 m. This means we are not seeing very young sharks, which are not large enough to capture seals, nor do we see the largest sharks, which can reach over 6 m. A number of newcomers and familiar sharks, including our beloved “Cuz” visited our boat, Blue Pointer 2,  this morning.

Although we have seen large sharks in the past, we were not prepared for the enormous animal that visited today. At a formidable 4.5 m in length, this shark was impressive not only for its length but also its incredible girth. This dark grey giant was easily the heftiest shark I have ever seen, likely weighing in at over 1000 kg.

With such a good day for cage diving, I was keen to jump into the cage myself. Cage diving always makes me feel like I’m traveling to another world and this experience was no different. Silence surrounded me as I submerged in the sunny, green water. A small 2.5 m shark appeared out of the green, magnified by the water, and darted at the bait. Later, as I prepared to surface, another shark outsmarts our crew and chomps the decoy.

The weather was so good and the sharks were so playful that even our crew-member Wellington, none too keen on cold water, hopped into the cage. It was difficult to keep count, but we must have seen about then 8 different sharks around the boat this trip. I’m glad I was able to roll out of bed this morning. Let’s do it again tomorrow!

Join us on our shark cage diving and Airjaws trips with African Shark Eco-Charters at Seal Island, False Bay, Simons