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Sadie Whitelocks from MailOnline dives freely with the terrifying bull shark in Fiji

“Don’t raise your arms and try to sit still,” we were told as we nervously sail to the shark dive site.

We were about to dive with one of the world’s most dangerous shark species, the bull, which has gained a reputation for being aggressive and unpredictable.

At the time of my dive, at the Barefoot Kuata Island resort in Fiji, I was not aware of how deadly this shark species could be to humans and only after further investigation did I realize that I had gotten to know something up close and personal really frightening .

Scroll down to view Sadie’s video of her bull shark adventure

On the island of Kuata in Fiji, travelers looking for adrenaline can dive with depicted bull sharks without a cage. Sadie Whitelocks from MailOnline took this photo when she tried out the experience

On the island of Kuata in Fiji, travelers looking for adrenaline can dive with depicted bull sharks without a cage. Sadie Whitelocks from MailOnline took this photo when she tried out the experience

Sadie said she didn't realize how dangerous the sharks were for her free dive

Sadie said she didn't realize how dangerous the sharks were for her free dive

Sadie said she didn’t realize how dangerous the sharks were for her free dive

However, I had been a little scared – as a result of the 1975 Jaws movie.

It contributed to the fact that there was no cage to protect me from an animal that can grow up to 11 feet and weigh 500 pounds.

Barefoot Kuata is one of the few places on the planet where you can do such a thing.

The bull sharks are always in the area because it is now a protected marine park and the coral has been regenerated.

And the shimmering blue water means that you can look straight into the eyes of the creatures with excellent clarity.

Barefoot Kuata’s ‘waking shark dive’ sees tourists looking for a sensation of a place where the seabed is in 40 ft of water.

They are then submerged by an experienced group of divers to sit and admire the bull sharks as they swarm and chew discarded tuna heads donated by fishermen.

Bull sharks can grow to more than 11 feet and weigh up to 500 pounds

Bull sharks can grow to more than 11 feet and weigh up to 500 pounds

Bull sharks can grow to more than 11 feet and weigh up to 500 pounds

The National Wildlife Federation states that bull sharks “are often considered the most dangerous sharks for humans because of their aggressive tendencies and their ability to migrate to rivers … bull sharks are also registered when eating other bull sharks”

My heart was beating when we stopped at the location and I was told to roll backwards into the water.

A girl I worked with had problems with her mask, so we were delayed for a while when the others ventured.

To my horror, when we finally descended, I saw that the feeding frenzy had already begun.

I saw more than six sharks circling and pulling tuna into their powerful mouths.

I kept breathing out air to sink further down, hoping the sharks wouldn’t spy on me.

Fortunately, I reached the seabed in one piece and clung to a low, man-made barrier built of coral to prevent my body from swaying in the fairly strong current.

Barefoot Kuata's 'awakening shark diving' sees tourists looking for a sensation of a place where the seabed lies in 40 feet of water

Barefoot Kuata's 'awakening shark diving' sees tourists looking for a sensation of a place where the seabed lies in 40 feet of water

Barefoot Kuata’s ‘awakening shark diving’ sees tourists looking for a sensation of a place where the seabed lies in 40 feet of water

Tourists are taken underwater by an experienced group of divers to admire the bull sharks as they swarm and come to eat discarded tuna heads donated by fishermen

Tourists are taken underwater by an experienced group of divers to admire the bull sharks as they swarm and come to eat discarded tuna heads donated by fishermen

Tourists are taken underwater by an experienced group of divers to admire the bull sharks as they swarm and come to eat discarded tuna heads donated by fishermen

My heart kept beating as more sharks appeared.

They came from the front, the side, and while I looked up, one was shaking over my head.

The girl next to me took a selfie with a shark, but I did not want to take my chances and remained firmly attached to the coral wall, silently admiring the animals.

Their tiny beaded eyes looked rather threatening, but their behavior did not match their mortal gaze.

They seemed uninterested in us and circled quietly through the water with an air of elegance.

Schools of fish danced alongside the sharks and sucker fish clung to them, sweeping up tiny pieces of tuna.

My heart rate dropped slightly when I realized that I was not on the menu. After 45 minutes we slowly came upstairs.

I kept looking behind me while I stood up and checked that no shark was shooting behind.

Back on the land I spoke with Davy M, a Belgian who is responsible for the diving operation of Barefoot Kuata.

He acknowledges that bull sharks are often mentioned as the most dangerous shark species.

A view of Kuata island in Fiji and the surrounding blue waters. The area is home to bull sharks thanks to ongoing conservation efforts

A view of Kuata island in Fiji and the surrounding blue waters. The area is home to bull sharks thanks to ongoing conservation efforts

A view of Kuata island in Fiji and the surrounding blue waters. The area is home to bull sharks thanks to ongoing conservation efforts

Stays on Barefoot Kuata Island start from just £ 37, with different diving options available

Stays on Barefoot Kuata Island start from just £ 37, with different diving options available

Stays on Barefoot Kuata Island start from just £ 37, with different diving options available

HOW TO TELL IF A SHARK CAN ATTACK

A shark that is going to attack will adopt the ‘threat attitude’. It will bend its back, raise its nose, and lower its pectoral fins with its tail down.

And it will often swim in a whimsical pattern.

When you see this, keep very quiet indeed.

For example the National nature federation states that “they are often considered the most dangerous sharks for humans because of their aggressive tendency and their ability to migrate to rivers … there are also bull sharks that eat other bull sharks.”

However, Davy says that bull sharks, like all shark species, are often misunderstood and shark attacks are extremely rare.

He explains: “Their eyesight is very bad.

“They can’t locate things. Combine that with cloudy water and the shark can easily confuse their prey.

“People are on their territory. They think people are prey and the only way to identify is to taste and they take a bite. If the shark were a human eater, no one would survive a shark attack.

“To be honest, they are disgusted by the taste.”

Davy says that no accidents have happened since the ‘awakening shark dive’ has been running for more than four years.

He adds: ‘It is actually safer to be in the water with the sharks without a cage. Their electrical feel bounces off the metal and it confuses them and can change their behavior.

‘These are beautiful creatures, they are shy and curious. That’s what I want people to see when they come here. ”

With that he staggered away, his leg injured by a piece of sharp coral, not by a bull shark.

TRAVEL FACTS

Stays with Barefoot Kuata Island start from just £ 37 with various available diving options. For more information about adventure activities in Fiji visit www.fiji.travel.

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