Kyle Morningstar was fishing with his friends off Ponce Inlet in Florida Saturday afternoon when he spotted a great white shark.
Kyle Morningstar was fishing with his friends off Ponce Inlet on the east coast of Florida Saturday when he spotted a dark shadow in the water slowly approaching his boat.
The 31-year-old Port Orange resident was pulling up the anchor of the boat around 2:30 p.m. when he looked over the side of his 23-foot boat and saw a fin poke out of the water.
It was a giant great white shark — and it was starting to pick up the pace.
“It did two to three laps around my boat,” Morningstar told Fox News. “It was well over half the length of my boat … we guess it was around a 12- to 15-foot shark.”
Morningstar has been fishing for awhile, but he’s never encountered a great white before, especially one as large as this.
“No. Never seen a great white before other than ‘Shark Week,’” Morningstar said. “Just how massive it was and then it was like, ‘Oh my God, that’s a great white.’”
It’s hard to explain what was going through his mind as he watched the shark swim laps around his seemingly tiny — in comparison — fishing boat, Morningstar said the only way to describe it was that it was “like a movie.”
“I looked down and saw a gray thing coming up as two or three ramora fish swam towards it,” he explained.
As the shark came into view, Morningstar grabbed his phone and started filming.
“Holy f***ing sh*t. Oh my f***ing God, bro,” men repeated on the boat as they watched the shark swim just feet away.
WARNING: VIDEO CONTAINS PROFANITY
Morningstar posted the video on Instagram and received dozens of comments from both terrified and impressed viewers alike.
“Dude, that’s amazing! What a rush,” one Instagram user commented.
“I would have died,” another added.
Morning called the encounter “shocking” and said he “couldn’t believe it happened.” Fortunately, he added, the shark only stuck around for about five minutes.
Great white sharks can grow up to 20-feet long and weigh up to 2.5 tons, making them the largest predatory fish to roam the sea, according to National Geographic. But they’re not as lethal as you might imagine.
“Of the 100-plus annual shark attacks worldwide, fully one-third to one-half are attributable to great whites,” National Geographic reports. “However, most of these are not fatal, and new research finds that great whites, who are naturally curious, are ‘sample biting’ then releasing their victims rather than preying on humans.”
But George Burgess, director of the Emeritus Florida Program for Shark Research, told the Miami Herald that shark encounters aren’t unusual this time of year in Florida.