Coming face to face with a whale shark, the largest species of fish in the world, as exhilarating as it would be it would also be terrifying to even to the most experienced diver.
The diver in this story got much more than just an experience because the whale shark needed something from him.
As the whale shark approached him, he thought the shark was just going to swim by like they normally do, but it shocked him by carefully tugging on his hand.
The diver just floated in place not knowing what the whale shark was doing, and he became concerned that the shark may harm one of his team members because of its odd behavior.
But just as quickly as the shark had grabbed his hand he let go.
Then the shark started moving its body on by him, and that’s when he noticed what appeared to be a giant commercial fishing rope wrapped around him, cutting deeply into its fins.
The diver whipped out the knife that he always carries on dives and started cutting the rope, not knowing how the shark was going to react.
The rescue took less than a minute but felt like it forever. When they got the rope removed they could tell that it had been digging into the animal’s skin for years. It must have been excruciating for the shark.
While the gentle giant’s size is intimidating, they don’t attack humans unless threatened or when they have young calves. That’s why they are sought after by divers to experience their beauty and gentleness.
It looks like the whale shark knew that the diver would help, and that’s why it felt safe enough to swim up and grab his hand.
Watch the interaction below and listen to the grunts of thanks the whale makes as it swims away.
Share this beautiful moment between the diver and majestic animal that most of us will never have the chance to experience in person in our lifetime.