Shark’s kiss – Diver shares touching moment with predator she helped
This brave diver looks to be caught in a scary face-off with a tiger shark.
Instead, it is a touching ‘kiss’ from the grateful predator.
Underwater photographer Leigh Cobb was diving with the sharks off the coast of the Bahamas when she spotted the female covered in parasites.
The 38-year-old removed her glove to scrape them off, which the animal hugely appreciated.
After swimming past several times to allow her to clear all the parasites, the shark swam up one last time for a touching embrace.
Leigh, from Wythall, Worcestershire, said: “This female tiger shark approached me covered in parasites. I removed my glove and luckily have longish nails. I started to pick off the parasites and she simply loved it.
“She kept coming around and back to me as I slowly removed the bugs from her skin.
“Eventually, after some 20 minutes, they were all gone, and she literally shook herself as though she was clear.
“Her path towards me changed as she made a wide berth to come in closer. It was incredible to see her reaction to being cleaned and her calmness and openness.
“My favourite picture is when she came straight towards me after I had finished cleaning her. She had her mouth closed, there was no aggression, she was simply appreciative.
“It’s a moment that will stay with me forever.”
Leigh enjoys diving with sharks and runs Shark Diver Travel, which aims to re-educate people about sharks.
She said: “I would dive with sharks as often as I eat if I could. Their bad reputation is simply not true.
“I want to show the world how these animals can interact with us on a different level.”