close up of a shark

Great White Sharks in Mexico

My other job, as well as running Unwind Travel, is the media. I have been a TV director for a number of years and have been lucky enough to go to a lot of countries around the world to film.

My first trip abroad was to make a series called “Killer Shark Live” for Channel 5.

We flew into San Diego and had a day or so of planning for the series and then it was a very long 24 hours on the sea in extremely choppy conditions to get to our filming location.

Luckily our nurse knocked all of us out so we weren’t running to the loo to be sick every 5 minutes.

The crew comprised of 26 of us. 3 women, 23 men and 2 loos…..all sleeping in bunks together in a 90ft fishing trawler. You can’t imagine what that was like!! I think the only things that kept us going were fresh lobsters for supper, caught from round the boat and apple martinis at sundown.

To film, we had one camera topside and then we had three cages suspended in the water from the boat at 10m, 20m and 30m. The 10 and 30m cages were enclosed but the 20m cage was open so that sharks could swim right through! Quite scary however amazing shots of the sharks from that camera.

One morning before we transmitted live back to San Diego, we decided to do an experiment with a bite gauge to see if we could measure the force a shark bites down on its prey.

We wrapped some tuna around a circular hoop and attached it to a long piece of wood. We also put a Go Pro camera on the end so we could hopefully get some additional footage.

We tried and tried for a long time to get a shark interested. But nothing until suddenly, I was calling “You’ve got 30 seconds of air left”! At this point a shark came in, bit the hoop, knocked the mask off the marine biologist who was holding the hoop (and remember he was 20m under), and swam off with the camera.

Our great technical staff had ensured that we could still transmit from the camera if this happened, so when watching back the footage, we had some amazing stuff. We saw the bite and the shark rolled his eyes as he did it and then more shots of him in the sea swimming off into the depths.

Everyone came out of the water safe and sound and we had some amazing footage to boot.

The next day we had a hurricane. But that’s another story!

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