Basking sharks: Man’s new best friend

When these swimmers and kayakers went for a swim this morning the last thing they expected was to be joined by a giant shark.

Bathers were making the best of the fine weather when the huge basking shark swam by. It merely swam in among them voluntarily and swam away again.

The video above was taken by Niamh Ní Drisceoil of the Fastnet Tour Company, who was on her lunch break when she recieved a call from one of her neighbours telling her about the shark.

Niamh who skippers the Cape Clear Ferry during the summer months is very familiar with sightings of basking sharks in the area and said "it was an awesome sight to see it beside swimmers and kayakers.

"It really put its sheer size into perspective alongside its new friends. And needless to say the shark was enjoying the company of the swimmers and kayakers as much they were of his."

The shark swam among the bathers for several minutes and was not harrassed or disrupted in anyway by them.

Basking sharks are quite common around Irish shores at this time of year, and feed mostly on plankton. These harmless creatures can mostly be spotted during fine, settled weather conditions, the likes of which we have been experiencing lately.

With this kind of weather, Cape Clear and Baltimore enjoy spectacular water wildlife that can be spotted from land and sea.

Could this shark be to Cape Clear what Fungi is to Dingle?

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