At the time of writing, 53 people had been attacked by sharks in 2023. The bloodiest year since the beginning of the twenty-first century was 2015 when 111 humans went scuba diving, snorkelling, surfing, or otherwise ventured into the ocean and came face-to-face with the ocean’s apex predator. This information, and much more, may be found in the Global Shark Attack File, which maintains a running tally and database of human-shark incidents dating back to 1845. The spreadsheet details everything from the kind of damage the victim suffered to the species of shark, the location of the attack, and much much more.
For today’s list, we’ve gathered some of the craziest shark attacks ever captured on film, and we’d like to warn you upfront that some of the footage may not be suitable for sensitive viewers. For the inquisitive, concerned, or simply fantastic fans with stronger stomachs, the items on today’s list appear in no particular order and include attacks on both people and objects, but mostly people.
Here are the 25 Craziest Shark Attacks Caught on Camera.
Tiger Shark Attacks Turtle
Although today’s list is in no particular order, we thought we’d start it off with a feel-good shark attack – believe it or not, it is possible. In 2022, a photographer found himself next to a dramatic encounter between a tiger shark and a sea turtle in Western Australia. The resulting footage was nail-bitingly good. The shark charged at the turtle, but the turtle flipped over multiple times to evade the shark’s deadly teeth and gave the shark its shell side. The shark could not grasp the turtle’s protective shell. When the shark finally grabs the turtle between its teeth, it looks like the game is over, but the turtle miraculously flips over again to free itself for good. According to the photographer, the turtle eventually made it to shore and lived.
The Recent Fatal Shark Attack in Egypt's Red Sea
From a feel-good story to one of today’s worst. A tourist died in June 2023 after being attacked by a tiger shark on a beach in Hurghada, Egypt. This was the first shark attack fatality in 2023. According to Egyptian media, the assault occurred in the seas of the Dream Beach Sheraton resort when the visitor was swimming far from the coast and was repeatedly struck by the shark. A group of beachgoers recorded the attack on video as they watched the victim trying to swim and surface while being attacked by the shark. The attack happened in two stages, with the shark repeatedly charging the visitor in the first. Unfortunately, the second phase of the traumatizing attack proved fatal. Locals believe the incident occurred due to shopkeepers tossing animal remains into the sea, which lures sharks to the area for feeding.
Diver Gets Attacked by Tiger Shark
Try out shark diving, they said. You will have fun, they said. It certainly wasn’t much fun for Steven Sim, Who was giving shark diving a go in Fiji when a massive 15ft tiger shark decided to have a closer inspection. The resulting video’s caption reads,”: This happened on May 17, 2019. The video is from a buddy’s GoPro. I never thought this would happen to me. I think I am the first diver who has been attacked when doing a shark dive. Happened so fast, the tiger shark just came and took a bite on my head….” While he wasn’t the first diver to be attacked while shark diving, he is definitely right about one thing: the shark bit into his head, leaving him with a three-inch laceration, but luckily mainly got the metal cylinder in its mouth instead of the diver’s skull.
The 1964 Attack on Henri Bource
The most unbelievable part of Henri Bource’s shark attack in 1964 was that a portion of it was recorded on film. Bource and two other divers were playing with seals in the ocean near Lady Julia Percy Island in Australia when a massive great white shark rushed up from beneath Bource and severed his leg. Bource’s diving partners heard him cry and saw his leg floating in the water. They were able to lift Bource back onto the boat, and he managed to give them his blood type, which they immediately radioed back to shore in preparation for emergency transfusions. Bource later revealed that he attempted to pull out his leg by shoving his palm down the shark’s mouth and gouging its eyes. Bource, an enthusiastic underwater photographer and filmmaker, revamped the footage of his attack a few years later for a documentary called “Savage Shadows.”
Shark Attacks Parasailer
In a scene straight out of the Jaws movie, a holidaymaking tourist found himself face to face with an aggressive shark just off the coast of Aqaba in the Red Sea in 2021. In the footage, we can see the man strapped into his gear, getting ready to be dragged by the boat. It seems like a lot of fun until a shark suddenly surfaces right underneath him and attacks. The man obtained several nasty wounds, torn tendons, multiple lacerations, and lost a part of his heal. It was the first attack of its kind.
Tiger shark attacks kayak fisherman off Oahu
On May 12, 2023, an ardent fisherman kayaking in the waters off Windward Oahu had an extraordinary close encounter with a tiger shark less than 2 miles from shore, and he managed to capture it all on camera. Scott Haraguchi was near Kualoa Beach when he captured footage of a tiger shark swimming toward his kayak. Haraguchi said he heard a “whooshing” sound right before seeing the “wide brown thing” on the side of the kayak. He instinctively lifted his left foot out of the water and started kicking at the shark’s head without even giving it any thought. After a while, the shark – estimated to have been over ten feet long – released the kayak and swam away.
The Deadly Shark Attack in Brazil
In 2013, an 18-year-old Sao Paolo teenager was on a family vacation in Recife with her mother, grandfather, and cousins. Bruna Gobbi was in the water about waist-deep at Boa Viagem when the shark bit into her left leg. One of her cousins, Daniele, who happened to be in the sea with her, could only watch on in horror. The footage of the attack shows a massive splash in the water before the water where she was swimming turns red. She was rescued with severe damage to the lower part of her left leg and was rushed to a nearby hospital, but she died following surgery to amputate her leg a few inches above the knee.
The Tour Boat at Seal Island, South Africa
South African Tour operator Rainer Schimpf found his tour boat was being chewed by a Great White Shark while following the sardine runs near Seal Island. The tour operator stopped his boat to allow the tourists to take pictures when suddenly, the shark appeared. This particular Great White shark was a female, about 4.5 meters or 15 ft long. Everybody was very excited until she started chewing on the boat. The attack took place off the coast of Mossel Bay in South Africa, and the group on board kept remarkably calm even though the shark’s bites into the back port side pontoons of the boat caused them to deflate immediately. The boat safely returned to land, despite having a chunk taken from one side.
Cage Dive Gone Wrong
In 2013, incredible video footage was captured of a gigantic 18 ft great white shark attacking a terrified diver’s cage. The attack took place off the coast of Stewart Island, New Zealand. The frightened diver was circled several times before the shark bit into one of the floats surrounding the cage. It has since been revealed that the shark is a “local legend” known as Slash. The terrifying monster got its name from the gash on its side, caused by a botched shark tracking project. This event changed his attitude, and he became very aggressive. According to the cage dive business’ owner, Slash is the most aggressive great white he has ever encountered.
Tiger Shark and Turtle Showdown
The online influencer and Youtuber world can be pretty scary, but never more so than in 2022 when Youtuber Brodie Moss found himself in the middle of a predator and its prey. In the footage, we can hear him say: “Oh, I’m between a tiger and a turtle. Uh oh!” before he crashes into his water along with his camera, which falls to the seabed. The shark lunges itself out of the water and bites into the paddleboard, leaving Brodie in the sea, but fortunately, he was unharmed in the nail-biting incident. Brodie shared the footage with his one million Instagram followers and on his YBS Youngbloods YouTube channel with a reminder that it’s their ocean, and we’ll always just be visitors.
Shark Attacks Boat of the Discovery Crew
A Discovery Channel video team had a terrifying experience when a massive white shark tried to attack their little dingy boat close to Stewart Island in New Zealand. The attack occurred while the crew recorded one of Discovery Channel’s Shark Week specials. The great white can be seen biting through the rope in an attempt to remove the dinghy from its mother boat. The crew was terrified. One cameraman later said: “It’s a little nerve-racking being in a boat no bigger than the size of the shark. The shark is actually bigger than our boat”.
The Whale Carcass Near Long Beach, New York
GoPro footage captured 45 miles off the coast of New York in 2015 recorded the unforgettable moment when a boat came face to face with a group of sharks consuming a whale carcass. While it would have been awesome if they stuck to the whale carcass, the sharks, unfortunately, started circling the boat and even attempted to bite the boat’s engines. One of the sharks, according to Michael Maiale, who filmed the encounter, was three or four times larger than they usually see in the area. The sharks were believed to be on their way north towards Cape Cod, where they feed on the seal population.
Shark Attacks Spearfishing Diver in Florida
Parker Simpson was spearfishing near Middle Sambo Reef off Boca Chica in the Florida Keys and had a lucky escape when a shark attacked him and his fellow diver in June 2017. At first, Simpson assumed he was trying to steal the black grouper he was holding, but after losing it and watching it swim to the bottom, the shark kept coming at them. The two managed to escape after they struck back with their spearfishing gun, and the shark took it to the bottom. The shark attacked both of Simpson’s fins and took a chunk out of his leg, ripping through the skin, fat tissue, muscle, muscle sheath, and an artery, which caused him to lose nearly a liter of blood. He received 56 stitches.
A Great White Shark Attack in Cape Town, South Africa
South Africa’s West Coast has its fair share of shark attacks. Shark attacks in this area are particularly noteworthy because the cold waters host some of the world’s most ferocious Great White Sharks and attacks usually end in death. In 2021, A British tourist decided to go for a swim in the waters of Fish Hoek near Cape Town despite numerous warnings from bystanders and shark spotters that the beach was closed due to a shark sighting less than 90 minutes before. Michael Cohen had barely taken a dip when a 10 ft Great White Shark took a bite from him. The men who braved the water to rescue him also narrowly avoided being attacked by the same shark. After losing one leg during the attack, Mr. Cohen was also forced to amputate his remaining leg as a result of the horrific injuries he received during the attack.
Attacked by a Bull Shark
In 2002, a shark expert known for his unusual research methods, Dr. Erich Ritter, was bitten by a bull shark in the Bahamas while filming a Discovery Channel program. Dr. Ritter was bitten in murky, waist-deep water while working with lemon, black-tip, and bull sharks when a bull shark chased a remora and bit into Ritter’s calf. After being bitten to the bone, Ritter was rescued from the water and rushed to a hospital in West Palm Beach, Fla., where he underwent an arterial and skin graft. He had to stay in the hospital for several weeks. In a weird twist of fate (and as these things usually go), some of his one-time colleagues jumped for an opportunity in the limelight and claimed that the scientific community did not accept Ritter’s methods and that he had been an accident waiting to happen.
Hammerhead Shark Gets Too Close For Comfort
Hammerheads are usually relatively peaceful compared to other sharks; as such, one holidaying couple at Panama City Beach, Fla., was shocked when they filmed what appeared to show a hammerhead shark charging a man standing in the surf as if about to attack. The hammerhead made a sudden turn toward the man seen in the video. At first, it seemed as if the shark was going after the man, but upon closer inspection of the footage, it becomes clear that the shark was hunting a small fish that instinctively used the man as a shield to escape the shark. After the case of mistaken identity in our previous entry and witnessing the hammerhead’s speed, we’re not sure if that is comforting to know or not.
A Surprise Shark Attack
We all do different things for fun. Some of us like to go hiking or camping. Others prefer running marathons. And then we get the deep water kayak fishermen. Devon de Lange was fishing in the Salt Rock region near Ballito, in South Africa, in 2016 when he hooked a stunning dorado and was focused exclusively on hauling it in. Suddenly a shark rose out of the water, grabbed the fish, rod, and reel, and knocked Devon off his kayak. De Lange, confused but extremely lucky, managed to get back onto his kayak – we’re not sure if he ever got his fishing rod back. He received no injuries.
Great White Attacks a Professional Surfer
In 2015, professional surfer Mick Fanning was attacked by a shark while participating in a surfing competition – and the dramatic ordeal was captured on live television. The Australian surfer averted the shark’s attack by punching it in the back and narrowly escaped the tense encounter without any significant injuries. However, the J-Bay Open in the Eastern Cape was forced to cancel the finals. Fanning can be seen battling to stay on his board in the footage as the shark thrashes violently next to him. Rescuers arrived immediately, and all of the surfers were safely brought to shore by boat.
Shark Grabs Angler's Hand in Everglades
When we think of the Florida Everglades, snakes and alligators are the first dangerous animals that jump to mind. Unfortunately, that may no longer be the case. Just a few weeks ago, an angler named Nick decided to wash his hands in the water of the Everglades while fishing. He can be seen stooping over the side of the boat before yanking his hand out of the water – with a shark attached. There is a brief fight, and blood from his hand is seen hitting the side of the boat as he falls overboard. He quickly gets back on the boat. According to his friend, Michael Russo, who was on the boat during the encounter, they rushed Nick back to land, and park rangers helped him get airlifted to the hospital.
The Shark Attack in The Aquarium
In 2012, a diver attempting to help lead a pregnant shark into a net was attacked by the pregnant predator, resulting in gruesome bite wounds. The footage, captured in a South African aquarium, shows divers attempting to help the ragged-tooth shark, which is usually extremely docile and harmless, as they were concerned about her health right before she gave birth. She can be seen quietly swimming through the tank after being darted while the divers wait to move in. But when one of the divers grasped her pectoral fin, she violently turned on him. The diver sustained serious wounds to his arm but healed up perfectly and returned to the diving waters after a series of operations.
The Great White Shark Attack off the Coast of Chile
Heather Boswell, 19, was swimming off the coast of Chile while working on a research ship when a shark attacked her. A home video captured the horrifying attack in which the young researcher lost her leg. It all began when the research team had a day off and chose to relax by swimming and snorkeling. A 16-foot great white shark suddenly appeared and attacked the 19-year-old. The footage shows the shark seizing Heather’s leg as she struggles to swim away. Meanwhile, the crew members desperately attempt to get her out of the water by extending a broom handle. The ordeal finally ended when one of her colleagues managed to grab her by the arms while another drove the shark away with a stick.
The Attack At 187 Feet (57m)
Two divers bit off more than they could chew while diving off Pidgeon Island in East New Britain, Papua New Guinea, a little over a year ago. The two had been rubbing a plastic bottle to produce vibrations to attract sharks. They had done well the previous two days, seeing a lot of little silver tip and grey reef sharks around 30m depth, but they wanted to see if they could get any bigger sharks, so they decided to go deeper. They went to roughly 57 meters on the third day and were around 3 minutes into the dive when an enormous shark charged them. The diver rubbing the bottle, managed to roll over as the shark hit him. He was unscathed and received no injuries except for a nasty headache (the shark hit him square in the face). At that depth, the shark is thought to have been hunting and zeroed in on the vibrations to go for a kill, but when it saw they weren’t food, it turned around and swam away.
The Sydney Shark Attack
In 2022, Simon Nellist died in what many believe is the most brutal shark attack on record. Simon, an advocate for shark preservation, was training for a charity event when he was attacked by a 13 ft long shark in what witnesses called a relentless and frenzied attack that lasted close to five minutes. In the days after the attack, allegations of chumming directed at the fishermen fishing in the area flew wild, an allegation strongly rejected. The mauling was Sydney’s first fatal shark attack in 60 years. Shark attacks in Sydney are uncommon because the city has long had nets and other deterrents in its waters. Australia typically records about 20 shark attacks yearly, with most in New South Wales and Western Australia.
The Double Great White Attack
Shannon Ainslie was only a teenager when he was attacked by not one but two 13-foot sharks, one lunging for his head and the other for his torso. The terrifying event remains the only recorded double shark attack on a human. The attack occurred in the middle of winter, during the annual sardine run, when vast schools of fish travel from Durban to Cape Town. Shannon was well aware that the chances of a great white chasing those bait balls were extremely high, but the group of surfers couldn’t help themselves. The moment he was grabbed and pulled into the depths was captured on video. At the same time, the other shark rushed through the water and struck at his skull. It failed, but it spooked the second beast. Shannon rode a wave to shore, where he was met by his brother and friends, who placed a tourniquet on his arm using his leg rope. Shannon was brought to the hospital and thankfully survived.
The Massive Shark Week Attack
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be inches from a massive great white shark as it launches itself in your direction with all its might? Neither have we. That was, however, the exact predicament one diver found himself in after being plunged into the ocean in a tiny cage and then forced to swim for his life to get away from the massive predator in a program shot for Shark Week. Jeff Kurr, the producer, and director of Shark Week, recalled being on a nearby boat at the time of the horrible incident and said it was an encounter he would never forget. The team initially believed the diver had died. It’s nearly impossible to survive when a 16-foot great white shark attacks you like that. The producer later revealed that the diver did, however, receive “a scratch” during the attack.