In the perilous world of chasing wildlife, there are a select few who seem to rise above the rest when it comes to courting danger. Stalking wild animals is a treacherous business as it is, and yet a few have the audacity to raise the bar even higher. That’s the kind of person underwater photographer Daniel Botelho is. No safety cage is necessary for this fellow.
One of Botelho’s recent escapades was when he went to an isolated island off Mexico to photograph great white sharks, refusing cage protection. What that crazy exploit yielded was a series of images that are all nail-biters.
Botelho does what he does, hoping his adventures will help dispel perceptions of white sharks as ferocious killers. While that might be wishful thinking, his efforts are nonetheless remarkable for their sheer nerve and uncommon bravado.
This of course, did not happen overnight. Botelho has been diving with white sharks for nearly 8 years already. What distinguished this dive from the others is it was his first time in the crystalline waters of Guadalupe Island, situated 165 miles west of Baja California.
The dive protocol had three divers outside of the cage at a time. The expedition leader, an unnamed guest and Botelho. The photographer logged close to 24 hours outside the cage while on a two-week trip and had zero close calls with the sharks that can easily weigh upwards of 5,000 pounds. He likened treating the ocean beasts like domesticated dogs.
“The sharks are like dogs; you need to keep them calm. As dogs, they can get excited with wrong moves and unstable attitudes, so the trick is to keep the right attitude, transmitting tranquility and peace to the animal, so it can come really close but not try to touch the diver. This is the definitive proof that great white sharks are not man-eaters; people can live and interact with great white sharks, as long as they have the understanding of how the animal reacts and how to build a positive interaction with this magnificent creature!”
Well…allright then. Whatever you say, Mr. Botelho. Following that similarity, most of us would not get near a Doberman, much more any species of shark.
Take a look at how this ‘shark whisperer’ gets away with his encounters here.