After our first dive with Shark Addicts, the SA Team simply couldn’t get enough! This week, we went right back to Jupiter, Florida for an epic round two with the sharks! However, we brought Exotic Wildlife Handler, Chandler Grant aboard along with World Renowned Underwater Wildlife Photographer, Cassie Jensen! Rather than hop aboard the morning or afternoon trip, the SA Team got an exclusive after hours dive to explore the behavior of these giants outside of normal diving hours!
The team arrived at the dock at 5:00 PM where we prepped our gear. Since there were no tourists aboard, we had complete freedom to feed, explore, work, and learn about the sharks. We were also able to run Shark Addict’s brand new 36′ Twin Vee to the Juno Ledges at Full Speed. The ledges were only brief ride away, and this time was occupied by safety briefings, final equipment checks, and bait crate assembly. Just like the last time, Cameron and Matt dropped the bait crate about 50′ down, and within moments the sharks made their way to the boat. At this time we all jumped in, watching closely as Bull Sharks, Silky Sharks, Dusky Sharks, and Sand Bars slowly approached our chum slick. Within minutes we went from a handful of sharks to a vicinity absolutely littered with sharks. “It almost feels like a Shark Party” says Noah Robert of SA Company… “It’s as if they get together to socialize, greet us and the other sharks, have some snacks, and leave” he goes on to say..
Some of the Team got out of the water for a few moments to check equipment and catch their breath. While we were topside, Captain Matt tells us about today’s afternoon dive where they encountered a Blue Marlin! Matt goes on to say that the Marlin dwarfed the sharks; that the fish was easily ten feet long, and probably weighing upwards of 350 pounds! This is an incredibly rare sighting in our waters. Normally Blue Marlin are found much farther out in deeper waters, and are usually only seen when Mahi Mahi are plentiful in the area. Since neither of those circumstances are the case, it was truly an incredible find!
During the dive, Wildlife Photographer, Cassie Jensen had found a large dusky shark swimming with about twenty yards of hi-vis mono-filament (fishing line) trailing from a big bull shark’s mouth! Cassie tells us that she couldn’t dive down deep enough to cut the line from the shark, but Cameron was able to! We estimate that nearly 30% of these sharks had hooks in a corner of their mouth. Of those 30%, half of those sharks had trailing lines behind them; one was even dragging a rope. Leftover hooks in the corner of the mouth will eventually deteriorate, but trailing lines can wrap up the animal and can potentially wound the sharks. The Shark Addicts crew is highly trained and strives to help these sharks whenever they can. They realize that most people can’t dive down and de-hook a shark, but they strongly encourage everyone to take part in local beach clean ups!
The sun began to set, and most of us climbed out of the water. We took the last bit of bait we had, tied it to a rope, and began to bait-line the sharks so we could end our day with a bit of action. Cassie had stayed under water to capture the final epic moments on video! As Cameron dragged the rope across the surface of the water, a full grown dusky shark had decided that meal was his! This shark was every bit as fierce as he was large! He grabbed a hold of that Bonita with his mouth full of razor sharp teeth, and shook it off the rope until nothing was left! Once he was done, he circled around to see if he had missed any. On our first dive, we were only able to witness a demonstration of their power from the surface, but thanks to our guests, we were able to capture an underwater perspective of this vulgar display of power!