Imagine. You are going for a long-awaited Bali diving trip, jumping to crystal-clear water of this beautiful island, and plunging to the depth of the ocean. You feel relaxed, surrounded with nothing but the blueness of the water—or the colourful coral reef and the blooming marine life around it. All of sudden, a big shadow is looming from afar—getting closer and closer, until you realize it’s a shark. A shark that get curious at you; a weird-looking, long wiggly fish breathing out bubbles. Your heart might stop beating for a moment. Most beginner divers do, especially when they have zero experience with sharks encounters before.
What should you do in moments like this?
Getting An Unplanned Sharks Encounter During Bali Diving
Contrary at how sharks are villainously portrayed by Hollywood, they rarely attack human unprovoked! Sharks also get in the same water with human more frequently than what you think. However, some divers do get attacked by sharks (most commonly by the white sharks/ bull sharks/ tiger sharks). In cases of unprovoked shark attack, experts analyzed that it’s most likely the consequence of divers not understanding how to engage appropriately with sharks or how to react if a shark suddenly becomes aggressive. In consideration of this, here are some guidelines for interacting safely with sharks in case you meet them during your dive trip in Bali.
Keep Your Calm
The first and most important thing, do not panic. Sudden movements and splashing, according to experts, can entice the shark even more. Panic increases a diver’s heart rate, body temperature, and adrenaline levels, all of which could cause the shark to react.
Maintain Eye Contact with the Shark
Maintain eye contact if you spotted the animal and it spotted you. Sharks will often circle behind you to take a bite if you keep a watch on them, so keep an eye on them. Maintain your composure and slowly back away.
If you lose sight of a shark, it may reappear nearby suddenly. Keep an eye on the creature until it loses interest and swims away. It’s worth waiting and watching for a few more minutes to see if it comes back.
While it comes to scuba diving buoyancy management, perfect horizontal trim may be the gold standard, but not when dealing with dangerous sharks. Standing erect offers you a considerably more imposing profile in the water, which the shark does not expect, making it nervous and unwilling to approach you.
Observe the Sign of Attack from the Shark
Sharks that swim calmly and relaxedly do not represent a threat in general. This is their energy-saving default setting. Oceanic whitetip sharks are notorious for circling groups of divers and making close approaches to each diver individually. Any change in that behavior, on the other hand, could indicate that the shark has become agitated, necessitating increased vigilance. Keep an eye out for jerky movements, quick tail movement, and bursts of speed.
How to Back Away
If a shark begins to show an interest in you by approaching you closer and closer, the best tactic is to exit the water – swim fast but gracefully, keeping a constant eye on the shark.
More Diving & Travelling Stories
Type of Sharks You’ll Meet While Diving in Bali
Only four shark species are considered harmful to humans: Oceanic Whitetip Sharks, Bull Sharks, Tiger Sharks, and Great White Sharks — none of which can be found in Bali. The sharks you can find in Bali’s underwater are mostly White Tip and Black Tip Reef sharks, and if you’re lucky, the elusive Wobbegong Shark. The reefs of Nusa Dua and Padang Bai are teeming with White Tip and Black Tip Reef Sharks, but these “scary fish” are actually shy and pose little threat to humans. Actually, the sight of them can actually highlight a scuba diving experience in Bali for most divers! These sharks are frequently seen swimming on beaches. They like shallow waters with a depth of less than 10 feet to live. Here in Bali, there’s no reason to be afraid of sharks! Seeing these lovely creatures gliding through the water is a sight to behold.