Fisherman Catches Rare All-White Shark Off The Coast Of Britain
Jason Gillespie, 50, was out deep-sea fishing with some pals when he caught an entirely white tope shark near the Isle of Wight - where better to find an all-white shark, eh?
The shark, which was around 3ft, is leucistic, which means it has lost all the pigment in its skin, leaving it snow white.
Jason, from Hampshire, usually releases tope sharks as soon as he catches them but he decided to reel this in so he could take some snaps of his unusual find before chucking it back out into the sea.
He said: "I've been fishing for 30 years and I've never seen one like that. Apparently it's a condition where the pigment dies out of the skin colour.
"It's similar to an albino, but they have red eyes generally.
"I caught it on Tuesday, off the Isle of Wight - what're the chances? I have no idea. It's the fish of a lifetime, one in a million.
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"I've certainly never seen one, it's been on Facebook since Tuesday and no one else has come forward and said they have caught one.
"I heard of one person from Wales who caught one years ago but it was much smaller, about 6lb.
"I think generally if they lose their colour they struggle to survive because they don't have the same camouflage and they can't hunt as effectively and they get picked up by predators.
"With tope, they are a protected species, so we unhook them in the water, but the minute we saw this one I shouted to my mate to grab the net and knew I needed to get some photos of it so we pulled her on board and took some pictures.
"We released her as quick as possible, she was only on the boat for less than a minute."
Tope sharks are often found in the UK and can travel huge distances - swimming from Britain all the way to the Canary Islands.
They lives off a diet of fish, crustaceans and cephalopods, and unlike this chap here are usually grey coloured with a white belly.
Featured Image Credit: SWNS
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