A whale carcass floating in the waters off Western Australia has attracted one hefty great white! The shark, which is estimated to be about four metres long, stopped by for a free feast of calorie-rich meat and blubber before setting off along the coast.  


Staff at Western Australia production company Terra Australis consider themselves lucky to have filmed the encounter, as heavy winds and rain made flying their drone exceptionally difficult. 

"It wasn't our first shark [and] whale carcass encounter," team member Ryan Chatfield told Perth Now. "But it is always amazing to see something as raw and powerful as that."

The whale remains first popped up near Alkimos Beach north of Perth over the weekend, and Chatfield suspects the burly great white had been munching them for several days. "The shark was feeding very sporadically," he said. "After those shots that we got it swam off and we didn't see it again."

Fisheries officers currently have no plans to relocate what's left of the carcass, as it will likely be finished off – or sink on its own – relatively soon. Tiger sharks and other predators have also been seen circling the area, so boaters and surfers are encouraged to resist the urge for a shark selfie (or carcass dance). 

Meanwhile, some 500 miles north in Western Australia's Red Bluff, a large near-shore baitball drew in its own predator party. Hundreds of sharks came in to feed on a glut of small fish, much to the excitement of local surfers and drone pilots. 

"The marine life in remote parts of Western Australia is as rich and dramatic as anywhere in the world," aerial photographer Sean Scott wrote on Facebook. "There were over 200 sharks. I saw people snorkelling and surfing all around. With a healthy ocean and some common sense, the sharks were not even an issue. The whole event was breathtaking and really emphasised to me that sharks are not interested in us." 

(Of course, it's always a good idea to keep a safe distance away from dense schools of fish: low visibility and hungry animals make for a potentially high-risk situation.)

Humpback whales, manta rays and whale sharks also turned up during the Red Bluff feeding event. You can check out Scott's video of it here.

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