15 Terrifying Shark Attacks Caught On Camera

Let's face it, sharks are some of nature's most vicious killers. Whether it's the faintest scent of blood from a small cut or an inexperienced swimmer flailing like a seal, sharks are on their prey like a pitbull on a poodle. Studies say there are nearly 20 shark attacks each year in the United States alone. In this day and age, with cameras everywhere, more of these attacks are happening on camera. And, thanks to trends in television like Discovery Channel's long running series Shark Week and movies like Mega-Shark and Jaws, people are hooked on sharks more than ever!

Humans love the ocean and when the weather gets nicer countless hordes flock to the beach to soak up rays and surf, armed with cameras and camera phones, and it's open season for these blood thirsty creatures of the deep to be caught on camera doing what they do best. As long as we head into the water like spring rolls on an appetizer plate, sharks will keep attacking like hungry guests at an Oscar party. So, swim into shore, towel off and put away your surfboard and let's take a look at 15 of the most horrifying sharks caught on camera.

15 The Mike Tyson Of Pro-Surfers

Mick Fanning, also known as “White Lightening”, is a professional surfer hailing from Australia. In 2015 Fanning and another pro-surfer named Julian Wilson were two minutes into a competition off the coast of a beach in South Africa when they spotted a great white shark wedging itself in between them.

What makes this so horrifying?

When Fanning spotted the shark, instead of panicking, he hauled back and punched the shark right in the face! Shark experts and marine biologists agree that if you ever encounter a shark, if you can't get out of the water, the next best thing to do is to fight dirty. Punch it in the nose or grab it by the gills. Even poke at its eyes if you can. Stunned, Fanning's shark attacker managed to chomp through the leash connecting Fanning to his board before swimming off. Julian Wilson helped fanning back to shore where he was later hailed as a folk hero in the surfing community.

14 Doctor Oh No

Dr. Erich Ritter, a respected and trusted name in the study of sharks and shark behavior, was filming an episode for Discovery Channel's Shark Week in 2003. Ritter is also known for using special yoga techniques when dealing with sharks in order to put them at ease while in the water with them. While off the coast of Walker's Cay in the Bahama's, Ritter and a film crew were waist deep in sparkling blue waters... surrounded by adult bull sharks. What's the worst that could happen, this scientist practices yoga!

What makes this so horrifying?

Moments after explaining that one needs to be extra careful and aware of their surroundings when dealing with bull sharks, one bumps into his left calf and immediately sinks its dozens of razor sharp teeth into the doctor's leg like your dad does with a turkey leg during Thanksgiving dinner. After a few terrifying moments the crew is able to remove Ritter's leg from the deadly grips of the sharks mouth and move him to shore, with bits of his flesh clinging to his blood soaked calf and ankle. Ritter spent many weeks recovering in a hospital. Although his left leg is now horribly disfigured, doctor's still managed to save his life and allow him the ability to walk.

13 I'll Have One Pontoon With A Side Of Camera Man

The story starts out simple enough: a video production company specializing in wild animal footage hires a boat to take them out into shark infested waters to collect some b-roll for their YouTube channel. As they approach, they see the sharks and the boat's drive sets a course right for the action. When they arrive, however, things quickly take an ugly turn.

What makes this so horrifying?

Provoked by either the fish around the boat or the underwater cameras being shoved in his face, the enraged shark attacks one of the inflatable pontoons keeping the boat, the crew and the camera equipment afloat. In true journalistic fashion, rather than firing up the engine and getting out as fast as possible, the crew continues to film, getting gnarly footage of a great white shark tearing through the rubber material like a hot knife through butter. The attack seemingly only lasts a few moments, but the boat is visibly damaged. At the last possible second the driver fires up the engine and the heavily damaged boat makes it to shore.

12 I Don't Think She's An Environmentalist Anymore...

Heather Boswell, a young environmentalist, was aboard a ship with a group of other environmental workers providing support off the southern coast of south America. After lots of hard work, the crew took a break and set out to take a swim off the side of the boat. A few crew members had video cameras with them and decided to take some footage of the post-work swim.

Why is this so horrifying?

This photo is like something out of a horror movie. We see a young girl having the time of her life on a trip with a group of friends. She has a huge smile on her face and then, in a split second, a large mass shows up behind her. Unbeknownst to her, Heather was about to be the victim of a brutal attack. Within seconds of the massive shark clamping onto her leg, she disappears under the dark blue water. By sheer luck, thanks to the shark's violent thrashing, Heather reappeared at the surface and at that very same moment her friends were able to grab her and pull her back on board before being killed.

11 They're Going To Need A Bigger Boat!

No doubt, when shark experts Jeff Kurr and Andy Casagrande had the bright idea to attach a camera to a great white's fin and climbed into a boat no bigger than the shark itself the famous line from the classic Jaws popped into their heads. The goal was to get footage of sharks hunting prey in their natural habitat. However, once the shark became agitated, the purpose was to not be thrown overboard.

What makes this so horrifying?

The two shark experts are mere inches from the water and are tasked with sticking their arms into the deep, dark water in order to fix a camera to a shark's fin. The small boat is tethered to a larger research vessel by a thin string. When provoked, the shark goes almost immediately for the string. It's almost as if she knows slashing through the string will make it easier for her to make a quick lunch out of the two goons inside.

10 Be Careful What You Fish For!

Not everyone on this list is an innocent bystander. In this shot we see a group of friends out for some fishing. Very early in the video there is some shark activity caught on camera and the person shooting the footage seems almost disappointed because he wanted to see more.

Why is this so horrifying?

Possibly provoked by the bait, or maybe by all of the fish activity around the boat, a hammerhead comes close to the boat to investigate. The shark takes several passes before finally giving the boat a warning bump. Unafraid, the people aboard the boat lure the shark back with freshly caught fish. One man holds some bait up for the shark and narrowly escapes losing a few fingers or his whole hand as the lightning quick shark takes up the bait. These guys got seriously lucky. The shark could have easily swam off with the guy's hand, or his whole body.

9 Caged In

Despite all the usual claustrophobic fears of being locked in a metal cage and then tossed into the ocean, shark cage adventures are often big draws for thrill seekers. Most of the time, the people locked in the cages have a front row seat for some really cool shark on fish action. Unfortunately for these two guys in this tank, they may have gotten more than they bargained for.

What makes this so horrifying?

This shark appears out of nowhere. Right away, he swoops in and pecks off an unassuming fish right near the cage. Then it's as if he spots the two divers attempting to get video footage of him. In what can only be described as a sheer nightmare this shark rams the cage, breaking off one side of it. Luck was on the side of our two diver friends because the shark was too big to get through the opening and eventually lost interest in his potential prey. The laughter and high five at the end really seal the deal.



We round out our list of craziest shark videos with footage of what sharks do best: absolutely obliterate their prey. In this photo we see a group of friends on their boat enjoying some afternoon marlin fishing. There's a sudden swell and then we see two or maybe three sharks all descend on a marlin that one of the men has hooked.

Why is this so horrifying?

At the end, we see that the only thing that's left of the marlin, a creature that can weigh up to 600 pounds on average, is its severed head. The three sharks all took hold of the trapped fish and ripped it to shreds. The man who originally hooked the fish could have easily been tugged right over and into the nasty fight that ensued between the tiger sharks!

7 Shark vs. Grouper


Yes, sharks are easily among the most dangerous predators of the sea. But they're still susceptible to being attacked. Here we see some fishermen enjoying a day on the high seas. One hooks a shark on his line and attempts to reel him in.

Why is this so horrifying?

It just goes to show you that the ocean is a very dangerous place, even for the top predators! This shark was about to meet its fate by human hunters but then, just off to the side of the camera, a dark mass appears. The mass takes shape and turns into a MASSIVE grouper! The grouper wastes no time and consumes the shark whole! Could this be what became of the shark in number 5? Who knows for sure.

6 His Wet Suit Is Now Extra Wet

Whale sharks are the unrequited kings of the shark world. Some can grow as large as twelve meter / forty feet in length and they are host to some times dozens of smaller fish who cling onto them and feed on whatever scraps they leave behind. They are the biggest and most threatening looking sharks for sure, and two spear fishermen got to witness their majesty first-hand.

What makes this so horrifying?

It appears as though one fisherman is filming the other attempt to spear a fish. At the very last moment, the fisherman begins flailing as if he's seen a monster. When the camera turns to see what's wrong, a whale shark is already on him. It comes at him with the force of a freight train and knocks him out of the way. The shark was probably more interested in what the spear fishermen were hunting, but it's still a shock to see such a behemoth up close!

5 Dickey's Death Wish!

It seems like scientists and animal experts will go to almost any length to learn more about their area of research. A researcher known only as “Dickey” in this photo climbs onto what appears to be a piece of equipment fabricated to mimic shark movements. Being ever the dedicated researcher, Dickey volunteers to pilot the confounded contraption just as not one but two sharks come into the water where Dickey and his team have decided to start filming.

What makes this so horrifying?

Okay, fine, technically there is no attack in this pic. But, let's face it, Dickey's basically on a floating piece of particle board shaped like a shark! Throughout the ordeal he is bumped and rocked by the shark. Its fin almost knocks him in several times. Things gets even more extreme when the geniuses back on the boat decide to pull him to safety. The shark has other ideas, though, and gets between Dickey and the boat. Thankfully, he moves away and they're able to pull Dickey on board... right as the shark takes hold of the fake shark's tail and takes a huge bite!

4 Cat And Mouse... Rather, Shark And Swimmer

Ranie Pearce, an endurance swimmer from San Francisco, had one goal in mind in the summer of 2016: to swim the Kaiwi Channel from Molokai to Oahu, Hawaii. This is quite a dangerous feat, considering the 26 miles between the islands, the choppy surf and, oh yeah, the shark infested waters! Thankfully Raine had a kayaking partner by her side as well as a boat full of other helpers and supplies.

Why is this so horrifying?

While Raine continues her long haul swim, her kayaker spots what appears to be a tiger shark creeping up on the swimmer. At first he does his best to get between Raine and the shark but he isn't much help. Watching Raine swim through the hard surf with a shark on her tail is like watching a cat toying with a mouse. Eventually the larger boat comes to the rescue and attempts to chase the shark away. This shark isn't having it and continues to stalk Raine! In the end, they must call the swim short and Raine enters the boat, saddened to have not finished the swim but happy to be in one piece and have all of her appendages.

3 Shark vs. Deep-Sea Diver

While millions of people go scuba diving each year, millions more don't for one simple reason: sharks! In this photo we see a solo scuba diver head out to the middle of the ocean in the Caribbean on the hunt for lion fish, an aquatic pest which is currently overpopulating that area of the ocean. Armed with a spear, a pair of flippers and a GoPro attached to his diving mask, he dives into the water and sets out for what he assumes to be an afternoon of ridding some coral reefs of some intruders.

Why is this so horrifying?

Seemingly out of nowhere, right as the diver spears another deep-sea pest, a medium sized shark swims right past the diver. It was most likely provoked by the fresh kill and wants nothing more than to attack the man and get his bounty. The diver first attempts to flee for his life as the shark makes several lunges. But like a tribal warrior, armed with his spear, the diver must fight for his life to get back to surface. After a few good pokes with the spear and a kick with his flipper the shark backs off and goes further into the deep.

2 A Challenger Emerges

Not every shark lives as an underwater alpha, dominating all living things in their path. Some sharks do meet fates similar to that of their prey. A filmmaker set out to document the life of a shark by outfitting one with a special sensor that would track the creature's every movement. After a while, the filmmaker lost track of the shark and then, many days later, the sensor washed up on shore... without the shark. The data collected is bone chilling.

Why is this so horrifying?

Alright, so this shows no actual shark attack. However, it does present evidence that the shark was attacked by another, much larger animal that ingested the 3 meter (9 foot) long shark whole. What sort of creature could do such a thing? The filmmaker and experts flat out don't know! Whatever it was, it was big and it could dive very deep below the ocean and up to the shore. Think about that the next time you visit the ocean!

1 Father And Son... And Shark... Bonding

What's better than a day out fishing with dad? How about not getting eaten alive by a shark? The shark in this photo is a great white has to be at least 20 feet long and could easily capsize the boat at any moment. This one is straight out of Jaws and blurs the line between interesting and scary.

Why is this so horrifying?

Throughout the five minute long scenario we can see the shark circling the boat as if she is ready to attack the father and son on board. It's one of those moments we've all had where we know something is dangerous but we just want to stick around a little longer and see what happens next. This situation is especially off putting because you can really hear the angst in the son's voice. While dad is interested in getting the best footage he can, we can all be pretty sure junior wants to get going!

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