Surf photographer takes amazing shot of tuna leaping in Watergate Bay

Not an everyday sight - surfers watch a giant bluefin tuna leaping out of the water at Watergate Bay in Newquay. Credit:

A stunning image of a giant bluefin tuna leaping over the sea has been taken by a Cornish photographer.

Megan Hemsworth from Portreath was shooting a surf lesson in Watergate Bay on Sunday 18 October when she spotted the amazing sight.

She says she did not have the camera ready for the first time it leapt but was able to capture it the second and third time it jumped.

Megan says "As a land and in-water surf photographer I spend my days photographing and empowering women in the surf community.

"On Sunday I was photographing Surfsistas Longboard clinic from the land, when to all of our amazement a HUGE tuna fish breached the waters. I quickly pointed the camera ready in case the fish jumped again and sure enough it did.

"The photo clearly shows the girls watching as this happened, giving perspective of just how big this fish is."

A surfer looks on as the bluefin tuna breaches the water in its hunt for prey. Credit:

Atlantic bluefin tuna are around 2.5m (6.5 ft) in length and can live for 40 years. They are one of the fastest fish and can swim up to 43 miles an hour. They have a voracious appetite and eat everything from small fish like sardine and mackerel to crustaceans, squid and even plankton.

They are classed as endangered on the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature) Red List as their population has been declining due to overfishing.

The tuna used to be a rare sight off the UK but there have been increased sightings off the South West coast in recent years - thought be down to the warming of the Atlantic waters around the Mediterranean driving their prey northwards.

It is thought the fish photographed by Megan Hemsworth was leaping in the air to try to catch its lunch. Whatever it was doing it was, as she says, "an incredible sight".