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Featured Image Credit: Joel Gray
A fisherman in New Zealand was left reeling after accidentally catching a great white shark while fishing for smaller fry from a local beauty spot.
Joel Gray was out with friends off the coast of the Bay of Plenty on the country's North Island when he hooked the beast.
It was only after several minutes wrestling to bring the beast in that he and other witnesses in the area realised it was a great white.
Joel told Stuff: “Me and my mate were out the day before in kayaks in the same spot.
“Never seen one before around here, only baby hammerheads or bronze whalers. It was an exciting experience.
“The people were all pretty freaked out and amazed at the same time as they’d been swimming there not long ago.
"They were locals and said they have never seen a great white around before that day.”
The shark leaped out of the water to shock the onlookers as Joel hauled it in, according to Stuff.
It appeared to be a juvenile fish measuring only a third of an adult's size at about two-and-a-half-metres but was still strong enough to break the fishing line and secure its eventual escape.
New Zealand's Department of Conservation marine expert Clinton Duffy said: “If you are visiting the ocean you need to be a little bit vigilant of what’s happening around you and swim where there are surf lifesaving patrols, and don’t swim or dive alone.
“If you are heading out on the water exercise caution and avoid swimming in the main channels where there are a lot of birds diving or belaying from kayaks and jet skis when fishing.”
The incident took place only days after Clinton's department issued a warning following recent shark sightings.
Last year saw great whites kill around eight people worldwide, according to the Mirror.
But the total number of attacks ranges much higher into the double digits with 71 total reports of the animals going for people.
The species hosts a mouth filled with 300 razor-sharp teeth arranged in seven rows.
They can detect prey with the ability to sense a single drop of blood in only 100 litres of water.