Hilton Head, SC (WLTX) - A South Carolina fishing crew got a close-up encounter with a great white shark, and the cameras were rolling for it.
Chip Michalove with Outcast Sports Fishing and his crew say on Wednesday, they went out on a mission to find one of the animals.
"We were looking for one, and there she was swam right up to the boat," he said.
At the time, they were about 16 miles off the coast when they found the 14-foot long female. They were able to catch the shark, tag her, then released her back into the water.
She was a healthy specimen, he said, although she had some scars from her time in the sea.
"She had some old battle wounds on the left side of her face from either mating or something she went after took a couple of chunks out of her," he said. "They looked like they were pretty old."
But it didn't go quite without a hitch: the shark took a little bite out of the boat.
"Just like any animal, they want to get the hell out of town," he said. "You grab anything wild they're going to bite you to get loose."
They recorded what happened, and uploaded the video to their YouTube page.
Michalove said he and his company have been working with scientists to track the animals and learn more about their behavior.
"Technology has advanced so much where we know where these animals are moving and now they can learn from them and learn how to protect them and preserve them," he explained. "I've been putting transmitters on them putting three different tags in them to learn as much as we can."
In fact, one of the recent ones he tagged can be tracked by anyone using an app called Sharktivity.
The one on Wednesday was the fifth he's tagged this season, which started in December, and ends in March. As it turns out, this is the time of year when great whites migrate off the coast of our state. In the summer, they go up near Massachusetts and New York, where the waters are cooler.
So the great whites will move away soon, and other shark species, including tiger sharks, will move into the region to take their place.
"The whole East Coach is like a highway, it's like I-95, there's always stuff coming and going," he said. ""They spend their summers up there, and their winters down here. Just like the old people (laughs)."