Boat trip treated to rare sight of thresher shark leaping out of sea in Cardigan Bay

  • Video credit: A Bay To Remember

The incredible moment a shark jumped out of the water next to a boat trip has been captured on camera.

Spectators on the boat were treated to a rare sight of a thresher shark breaching the water and throwing itself up in the air twice in Cardigan Bay.

A Bay To Remember, which provides Dolphin and Wildlife Watching Boat Trips, said it was only the third time they had seen the fish and the first time it was caught on camera in their 16 years of business.

In a Facebook post, the boat tour agency said: "Yesterday evening, we were treated to this amazing encounter with a thresher shark, just off Pen-Yr-Afr. What an amazing creature!"

The thresher shark usually spends most of its time in the deep waters of the open sea and rarely strays into coastal area.

Tony Barber from the boat touring company caught the incredible moment on camera: "It all happened so quickly, it was quite a blur so I was very happy that I caught it on camera.

"It was very exciting and completely unexpected!"

Tony added: "It shot out of the water right next to the boat and gave us all quite a shock.

"They’re pretty unusual to see close inshore and it's very rare to have such a close encounter. Capturing it on my phone was really just pure chance!"

According to The Wildlife Trusts, thresher sharks are a migratory species and pass through UK waters in the summer months. They can live up to 50 years, growing up to 6m in length and 340kg in weight.

Thresher sharks use their extremely long tail to hunt. They herd smaller fish into tight shoals, swim at them and thrash their tail like a whip - stunning some of the fish and making them easy to catch.

The species has been listed as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List.

It comes just days after a huge basking shark was spotted in waist-deep water in west Wales.

Thought to be at least 12 foot long, the creature was swimming near one of Wales' popular beaches in Tenby.