In this category you will find information about shark diving, including subjects such as where to find good shark diving destinations, the best season for shark diving at different dive sites, environmental issues related to shark diving, what to think about during a shark dive, and of course safety issues.
Some dive schools offer speciality courses focused on shark ecology, shark behaviour and how to carry out safe and non-intrusive shark dives. Other dive trip arrangers do not require you to participate in any special course; a dive guide will accompany you throughout the dive and ensure your safety. Some dive trips use special equipment, such as protective cages during their shark dives. Others prefer to carry out normal scuba diving and stick to a set of rules that are intended to minimize the risk of a shark attack.
The habit of feeding sharks during shark diving is heavily debated, since this might increase the risk of shark attacks and potentially disturb the ecosystem by making the sharks depend to heavily on humans to get their food. If these suspicions are true or not have however still not been determined scientifically. In the mean time, many shark dive arrangers limit the numbers of shark feeding trips each month in order to make sure that the sharks never begin to depend on being given food instead of hunting. Others have chosen to refrain form feeding the sharks altogether and will instead encourage their scuba diving customers to watch the sharks carry out natural behaviours, such as hunting for prey.
Sharks are found in all the oceans of the world, and some of them even venture into freshwater. Shark diving can therefore take place all over the globe, but there are certain regions where your chances of encountering sharks are much higher than normally. One such place is the West Indies where you can find several different shark species. You can for instance choose to go shark diving around the Bahamas, where shark diving has been taking place since the 1970s and you can see Caribbean reefs sharks as well as Silky sharks and occasional Hammerhead sharks.
In South Africa you can embark on a shark diving adventure in the aptly named “Shark Alley” near the fishing village of Gansbaai. In these waters, you can encounter the Great White Shark – one of the world's most feared creatures, and probably also one of the most misunderstood ones. The best season for shark diving around Gansbaai is during the South African winter; from April to September. During this period, the sharks are especially active and consistent in their feeding patterns. You can still see sharks during the rest of the year, but the feeding patterns are less predictable. In November, December and January, the seals come to nearby Dyer Island to breed and this will naturally attract the sharks. If you arrive during low season, a trip to Dyer Island is therefore recommended.
Shark Diving Articles:
Great White Shark Diving at Guadalupe Island - An example of a shark diving cruise.