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Sunday 31 August 2014

Irish swimmer's close encounter with three huge sharks caught on camera

Published 02/05/2014 | 13:04

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Niall Hogan is pictured swimming in the water with a basking shark. Photo: Stephen Lynott/Twitter
The basking sharks were estimated to 16-18ft long
The basking sharks were estimated to 16-18ft long

A Kerry swimmer has told of his close encounter with three huge basking sharks yesterday.

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Stephen Lynott (25) was swimming in St Finian’s Bay – close to Skelligs Rock – in South Kerry when basking sharks came into the bay.

The basking shark  is the second-largest living fish, after the whale shark, and one of three plankton-eating sharks besides the whale shark and megamouth shark.

Mr Lynott told independent.ie: “A dolphin has a horizontal tail so you can’t see it coming out of the water. I saw a dorsal fin and tail, and then I saw that there were three or four of them.”

“I got in the water and another came up on the inside of me; it was between me and the shore which is really unusual.”

“One of the lads saw one of them under water filtering plankton – where the shark opened his mouth really wide.”

He estimated that one of the sharks was 16-18 feet long.

Basking sharks are not typically dangerous to humans as they feed on plankton.

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