There are more than 500 shark species worldwide.
Great white sharks are common in Pacific waters, but what are the odds of finding one in the UK?
Are there great white sharks in UK waters?
It is believed that in February 2022 a “Great White Shark” was sighted lurking off the coast of Britain.
A veteran shark fisherman said the creature, seen near the beach at Goring-by-Sea in West Sussex, was “obviously a shark” and it could be a “small, immature great white shark” which, according to was looking for food.
However, as these sharks prefer warm waters, they are highly unlikely to be found in British seas.
A great white shark can grow up to 20 feet long and weigh 5,000 pounds — and it can live to be 70 years old.
They are also responsible for more human attacks than any other shark species.
What sharks are in UK waters?
More than 40 different species of sharks are found in UK waters, but only 21 of these are seen year-round.
The porbeagle is one of the most common shark species sighted by British fishermen.
Its prominent dorsal fin and long, powerful body are among the features that make the creature resemble a Great White.
Thankfully, there has never been a confirmed case of a porbeagle shark killing a human, as the predators feed on smaller fish.
The basking shark is another species that regularly causes alarm in British waters.
They are the second largest species of fish after whale sharks.
Although the creature can grow up to ten meters in length and has a worryingly large jaw, it is highly unlikely to attack as it feeds on plankton.
Blue sharks are also found in UK waters, however they are only seasonal visitors.
Have there been shark attacks in UK waters?
Few sharks pose a threat to humans and it is extremely uncommon to find them in UK waters.
There have been no unprovoked shark bites in British waters since records began in 1847 Shark Trust.
But there have been a number of cases where people have put themselves in danger.
Fisherman Max Berryman, 21, suffered deep bites “to the muscles” after towing a porbeagle shark onto his boat off the Cornish coast in 2018 Mirror reports.
Stephen Perkins had to undergo reconstructive surgery after becoming the first person in Britain to be bitten by a blue shark.
He was pulling his catch onto his boat while fishing off the Devon coast in 2008 when the shark slammed its teeth into his forearm.
Are great white sharks dangerous?
Despite their sinister reputation, great white sharks rarely attack humans.
There is no real evidence that white animals actively attack humans, but they are known for both provoked and unprovoked attacks.
Shark attacks are generally rare.
Where in the world are great white sharks most commonly found?
Typically, the great white shark is found in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans, as well as the Mediterranean Sea.
Chris Fischer, founding chairman of Ocearch, said during an update on the expedition’s progress that she believes great white sharks “should be in this area for summer and fall feeding.”