Watch This Fascinating Video Of Sharks and A Crocodile Feeding On The Same Meal
Recently a rather remarkably rare spectacle took place about a mile off the coast of Western Australia that was captured on video. A drone captured footage of sharks and a saltwater crocodile engaged in a feeding frenzy side by side on a 50-foot humpback whale carcass. It is believed that this is the first time ever that sharks and crocs have been documented feeding together. Dr Austin Gallagher a scientist who has been studying sharks for more than a decade says he has never seen anything like this and it is incredibly rare to see two species overlapping.
The expert decided to investigate
The video was posted on Facebook by an Australian charter company and fortunately the shark expert spotted it and decided to do some further research. Dr Gallagher contacted the charter company to obtain more information about the event and together with a couple of colleagues investigated and wrote a paper on their observations. According to Dr Gallagher sharks are incredibly difficult to study because they are quite large and move around a lot. They are also very dangerous to work with and because the ocean conceals them, studying them is quite the challenge. Nevertheless, when unique instances occur, experts learn a lot in a very short space of time.
Whale carcasses attract sharks from hundreds of miles away
When a whale carcass rots, it creates a huge amount of odours and fumes that sharks easily pick up on. The species is well known for its sense of smell and therefore a dead whale can attract sharks from hundreds of miles away. Mr Gallagher has seen as many as 40 great whites feasting on a single carcass. In this case there were four tiger sharks plus a giant 13-foot crocodile feeding on the whale. As a result of Australia’s dramatic tidal cycles, the carcass had been dragged closer to the shore and within range of the crocodile.
Shark not happy with crocodile joining in the feast
Sharks tend to be quite laid back when it comes to feeding on a whale carcass because they all have the opportunity to feed, though there does tend to be some sort of pecking order based on size. However, when the crocodile decided to join in, it appeared not to sit well with at least one of the sharks. If you check out the video, you will see that the shark makes brief contact with the crocodile and splashes the water with its tail in a likely attempt to deter the crocodile for participating in the feast.
Not sure who would win in a fight between a shark and a croc
After the interaction the shark quickly departs from the area and the crocodile continues to feed. Dr Gallagher said it appears that the crocodile was not phased by the interaction and had the shark managed to agitate the crocodile, it is not clear what the outcome would have been. There is no way to tell who would win in a battle between a shark and a crocodile. Dr Gallagher says that sharks would probably not want to engage because crocodiles have extremely tough skin.