Transcript: Ep. 3 - Shark Nation | Mar 19, 2019

(dramatic music plays)

Sharks swim near the seabed.

A Male Narrator says SHARKS DEFINITELY
HAVE AN IMAGE PROBLEM.
AFTER ALL, THEY DO,
ON RARE OCCASION,
KILL PEOPLE.
BUT WHAT'S NOT COMMONLY KNOWN
IS THAT THEY'RE IN
DEEP TROUBLE GLOBALLY.
THE POPULATION OF SOME
SPECIES HAS DECLINED
BY MORE THAN 90 PERCENT
DUE TO OVERFISHING
AND OUR INSATIABLE APPETITE
FOR SHARK FIN SOUP.
LARGER ANIMALS SUCH AS
HAMMERHEADS, OCEANIC WHITE TIPS
AND TIGER SHARKS
ARE DISAPPEARING FAST.

(electronic music plays)

The Narrator says THERE'S ONE PLACE IN THE WORLD
WHERE SHARKS STILL FLOURISH,
THE BAHAMAS.
IN THE CRYSTALLINE WATERS
OF THIS ISLAND NATION,
SHARKS ARE HIGHLY PROTECTED.
IT'S ILLEGAL TO KILL THEM.
STUART COVE'S GREAT
PASSION IS SHARKS.
TRAVELLING IN HIS SMALL PLANE,
HE HELPS SPREAD A GOSPEL
OF SHARK ADVOCACY
ACROSS THE BAHAMAS.

Stuart Cove pilots a plane. He is in his fifties, clean-shaven with short hair. He wears sunglasses, a pink polo shirt and a dark jacket.

The Narrator says A SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEUR
AND SELF-DESCRIBED SHARK GEEK,
STUART AND HIS DEDICATED STAFF
HAVE INTRODUCED THOUSANDS
OF SCUBA DIVERS TO THESE
MUCH MALIGNED CREATURES.
SHARK TOURISM IS HIS BUSINESS.
AND THE MOST SOUGHT AFTER
AND PRESTIGIOUS JOB
AT HIS OPERATION
IS SHARK FEEDER.
COMPETITION FOR A HANDFUL
OF POSITIONS IS TOUGH.
IT'S ALSO A FAMILY AFFAIR.
STUART COVE'S TEENAGE CHILDREN,
SASHA AND TRAVIS,
ARE BOTH VETERAN
SHARK WRANGLERS.

Music plays as the opening sequence rolls.

The title of the show appears against clips showing images of marine life. It reads "The Blue Realm."

The Narrator says WITH A DRAMATIC
INCREASE IN ATTACKS
AND FATALITIES IN RECENT YEARS,
SHARKS CAN'T SEEM TO SHAKE
THEIR BAD REPUTATION.
THEY COULD SURE USE SOME HELP
WITH THEIR PUBLIC RELATIONS.
DEMAND FOR THEIR FINS, JAWS
AND MEAT GROWS EACH YEAR.
THERE IS ONE REMARKABLE
COUNTRY THOUGH
WHERE SHARKS ARE NOT HUNTED.

An animated blue, yellow and black flag rises above the sea. It reads "Shark Nation."

A clip shows different children talking to the screen, one at a time.

They say SHARK POPULATIONS
ARE IN TROUBLE GLOBALLY.
THIRTY PERCENT OF SHARK SPECIES
AROUND THE WORLD
ARE ENDANGERED.
IT'S THE DEMAND FOR SHARK FINS,
LIVER OIL AND OTHER PRODUCTS
THAT HAVE DRIVEN
NUMEROUS POPULATIONS
TO THE BRINK OF EXTINCTION.

Captions read "Long Island. Cat Island. Andros. New Providence. Eleuthera. Grand Bahama. Abaco. Bahamas Public Service Announcement."

The Narrator says THE PEOPLE OF THE
BAHAMAS TAKE THE PLIGHT OF
SHARKS VERY SERIOUSLY.

They continue PLEASE. PLEASE. PLEASE.
PLEASE PROTECT OUR SHARKS.

The clip ends.

The Narrator says IN 2011,
THE TINY NATION OUTLAWED
ALL FORMS OF COMMERCIAL
SHARK FISHING
AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE
IN SHARK PRODUCTS.

A caption reads "Eric Carey. Bahamas National Trust." Eric is in his late forties, with a goatee and a shaved head. He wears a cap, blue polo shirt and glasses.

Eric says THE ASIAN MARKET
FOR SHARK FINS,
THEY LOOK EVERYWHERE, YOU KNOW.
ANYWHERE THERE'S A SHARK,
THEY'RE GOING TO SEND BOATS.
AND OF COURSE, EVERYBODY KNEW
THAT THE BAHAMAS HAVE THIS
INCREDIBLE POPULATION OF SHARKS
AND SO THEY STARTED SENDING
SCOUTS INTO COMMUNITIES
TALKING TO FISHERMEN, "HEY,
WOULD YOU LIKE TO GET INVOLVED
IN THIS INCREDIBLE INDUSTRY?"
CATCH SHARKS,
WE'LL BUY THE FINS."
YOU KNOW, IT STARTED
PRETTY QUIETLY
BUT THEY WERE IN
A NUMBER OF COMMUNITIES.
WE KNEW THIS WAS SOMETHING
WE DIDN'T WANT IN OUR COUNTRY.

Then, talking to Stuart on the beach, Eric says IF THEY COULD DECLARE IT
A NATIONAL PARK...

The Narrator says ERIC CAREY
IS THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
OF THE BAHAMAS NATIONAL TRUST,
AN ORGANIZATION CHARGED
WITH THE CONSERVATION OF NATURAL
AND HISTORIC SITES.

Eric says WE NEVER, EVER HAD
A FISHING INDUSTRY FOR SHARKS
AND SO SHARKS WERE NEVER
UNDER THREAT IN THE BAHAMAS
AND AS SUCH, WE'VE ALWAYS HAD
PRETTY GOOD POPULATIONS
OF SHARKS.
THE NEED FOR THE LEGISLATION
CAME WHEN THE SCOUTS STARTED
COMING IN, LOOKING TO EXPLOIT
OUR SHARK POPULATIONS.
THAT'S THE ONLY TIME
WE REALLY FELT WE NEEDED
TO OFFER MORE PROTECTION
FOR SHARKS IN OUR COUNTRY.

The Narrator says ONE OF THE BAHAMAS
MOST VOCAL SHARK ADVOCATES
IS STUART COVE.
HE LOVES SHARKS,
SO MUCH SO
THAT HE'S DEVOTED MUCH
OF HIS LIFE TO STUDYING
AND SCUBA DIVING
WITH THE ANIMALS.
IT'S ALSO HIS BUSINESS.
AND SHARK TOURISM IS BOOMING.

(upbeat music plays)
Visitors get out of a van that reads "Stuart Cove."

Stuart says FROM OUR RESEARCH,
IT SHOWS THAT 40 PERCENT
OF THE DIVERS
COME TO THE BAHAMAS
BECAUSE OF THE SHARK DIVES.
WE'RE DOING APPROXIMATELY
60,000 EXPOSURES
INTO THE WATER EVERY YEAR
WITH VISITORS.
SO IT IS A HUGE ECONOMIC ENGINE
AND HELPS THE ECONOMY,
HOTEL ROOMS, THE TAXI DRIVERS
BENEFIT, THE SHOPS.
EVERYBODY BENEFITS FROM
THE SHARK EXPERIENCES.

The caption changes to "Stuart Cove."

Stuart continues BUT THAT'S NOT THE
MOST IMPORTANT THING.
WHAT I THINK BAHAMIANS REALLY
APPRECIATE IS HOW IMPORTANT
THE SHARKS ARE FOR THE HEALTH
OF OUR MARINE ENVIRONMENT.

The Narrator says COORDINATING THE
HORDES OF SHARK DIVING TOURISTS
THAT VISIT THE BAHAMAS EACH WEEK
IS A LOGISTICAL CHALLENGE.
MANY OF THEM HAIL
FROM CRUISE SHIPS
MAKING SHORT STOPS AT NASSAU.
SHARK DIVING DEFINITELY APPEALS
TO MORE ADVENTUROUS TYPES.

The caption changes to "Tom Zupon." Tom is in his mid-forties, with a short beard and brown hair. He wears a cap and a blue T-shirt.

On a boat, Tom says FIRST SHARK DIVE,
MY DAUGHTER SAID SHE WANTED
TO DO IT AND AS YOU CAN SEE,
SHE'S NOT HERE.
I'M BY MYSELF.
He laughs and continues
SHE CHICKENED OUT THIS MORNING.

The caption changes to "The Tuck Family."

A man in his fifties says I'M HERE WITH MY FAMILY.
WE CAN'T WAIT.
WE'RE PRETTY STOKED ABOUT IT.

A woman in her forties says I THINK IT WAS A
COLLECTIVE DECISION
THAT IT SOUNDED LIKE FUN.

A woman in her twenties says YEAH, DEFINITELY.
I MEAN, YOU KIND SEE ONE
AND YOU'RE LIKE WHAT A THRILL.
OF COURSE WE WANT
TO DIVE WITH SHARKS.

The caption changes to "Ronald Wilkin."

In his fifties, Ronald says REALLY LOOKING FORWARD
TO MY FIRST SHARK DIVE.
I FEEL LIKE A KID
BEFORE CHRISTMAS.

Tom says I'VE SEEN LOTS OF SHARKS
BUT I'VE NEVER HAD THEM,
AS THEY SAY, THEY'RE GOING
TO BE UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL.
SO I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO THAT.

The Narrator says SHARK FEEDERS
ARE LIKE KNIGHTS
HEADING OFF TO BATTLE.
THEY NEED A SUIT OF ARMOUR
TO PROTECT THEM.

Visitors get ready to dive in a boat.

Rudy is in his thirties, with a goatee and short hair. He wears a suit of armor.

A man scrapes Rudy's arm with a knife.

Rudy says IT'S NOTHING!

He laughs.

Rudy says IT'S A REAL KNIFE.
WE'RE NOT FAKING IT, BUDDY.

Woman 1 says I'M FEELING QUITE NERVOUS.
BUT IT'S GOING TO BE GOOD.
IT'S GONNA BE FUN, I THINK.

Woman 2 says WHOOO!

Woman 1 says I'M GOING TO CONCENTRATE
ON KEEPING MY LIMBS TOGETHER.

The caption changes to "Rudy Ferguson. Shark Feeder."

Looking inside a bait box, Rudy says WE HAVE
SOME GROUPER PIECES.
THAT'S PRETTY MUCH
THE MAIN THING
THAT WE HAVE IN HERE TODAY.
I THINK THERE'S ALSO A FEW
SNAPPER BITS IN HERE AS WELL.
BUT THIS GROUPER, THIS IS
PART OF THEIR MAIN DIET.
THIS IS WHAT THE SHARKS LIKE.

Man 1 says SHARK!

Woman 3 says I'M EXCITED.
I'M REALLY EXCITED.

Man 2 says SHE'S EXCITABLE.

Rudy says READY?
ALL RIGHT, LET'S GO!

[splash]
Rudy pushes a woman into the water.

Rudy laughs and says I LOVE PUSHING PEOPLE IN.

Woman 4 says I'M FINE IF I DIE.
I'M GOING TO BE FINE.

Rudy says BIG GIANT STEP.

The Narrator says IT DOESN'T TAKE
LONG FOR THE GUESTS OF HONOUR
TO SHOW UP FOR FEEDINGS.
MANY OF THESE SHARKS HAVE
BEEN DOING THIS FOR DECADES.
THEY'RE OLD PROS.
THE MORE EXCITABLE PARTICIPANTS
ARE THE BIG GROUPERS
LOOKING FOR A QUICK HANDOUT.
GUESTS DESCEND TO THE BOTTOM
FIRST AND LINE UP
AROUND THE FEEDING SITE.
THE FEEDER FOLLOWS SHORTLY
AFTERWARDS WITH THE BAIT BOX.

Ronald and his son appear on split screen with sharks swimming around a feeder.

Ronald says THE SHARKS ACTUALLY
CAME LIKE BETWEEN ME AND MY SON.
WE WERE SITTING LIKE WE ARE NOW
AND A SHARK CAME BETWEEN US.
THEY CAME OVER OUR HEADS.
THEY CAME AROUND OUR SIDES
AND BACK TO THE FEEDER.
IT WAS AMAZING.

Ronald's son says THEY WERE LIKE ATTACKING
THE FEEDER, ATTACKED HIM.

Tom says THE SHARK DIVE WAS PHENOMENAL.
IT WAS AN INCREDIBLE EXPERIENCE.

Woman 5 says IT WAS REALLY FUN.
DEFINITELY ONE OF THE BEST DIVES
I'VE DONE SO FAR.

Woman 6 says IT WAS A LOT LESS SCARY
ONCE YOU GOT DOWN THERE UNTIL
YOU STARTED REALLY THINKING
ABOUT WHAT YOU'RE WERE DOING.
AND IT WAS JUST REALLY CRAZY.
I MEAN, REALLY ONE OF THE
CRAZIEST THINGS I'VE EVER DONE.

Fast clips show the visitors observing sharks underwater.

Ronald says I LIKE IT WHEN HE WAS
TICKLING THEM UNDER THE CHIN
TO MAKE THEM FALL ASLEEP
AND HE WOULD MOVE THEM AROUND
AND PUSH THEM TOWARDS PEOPLE.
OH, IT WAS FUN.
I NEVER SAW ANYTHING LIKE IT.
NEVER DREAMED IT WAS
GOING TO BE LIKE THAT.

The Narrator says THE FEEDER
CAN IMMOBILIZE SHARKS
EITHER BY FLIPPING
THEM UPSIDE DOWN
OR BY STIMULATING
THEIR SENSITIVE SNOUTS.
THE ANIMALS LAPSE INTO A STATE
OF TONIC IMMOBILITY
THAT'S SIMILAR TO FAINTING.
THE SHARKS ARE BRIEFLY
INCAPACITATED
JUST LONG ENOUGH FOR GUESTS
TO GET A CLOSER LOOK.

Tom says OH, IT WAS INCREDIBLE.
THEY TOLD US NOT TO TOUCH 'EM
BUT WE DID.
He laughs and continues
SHARKS WERE SWIMMING EVERYWHERE.
I KEPT GETTING NUDGED.
I THOUGHT IT WAS
MY BUDDY NUDGING ME.
LOOK OVER, IT'S A SEVEN,
EIGHT FOOT SHARK,
HITTING INTO ME.
I WAS PRETTY COOL.

A woman high-fives as sharks swim around.

Stuart says IT'S SAFE TO SAY THAT
THIS OPERATION IS THE BIGGEST
SHARK DIVING OPERATION
IN THE WORLD.
WE HAVE MADE A HUGE IMPACT
ON THE SHARK POPULATIONS,
NOT ONLY IN THE BAHAMAS
BUT AROUND THE WORLD.
THE BAHAMIANS STOPPED
LONG-LINING IN 1993
DUE TO THE SHARK
INTERACTION EXPERIENCES.
AND MORE RECENTLY
THE WHOLE COUNTRY
HAS BEEN TURNED INTO
A SHARK PARK.
YOU'RE NOT ALLOWED TO KILL
ANY SHARKS HERE, TAKE ANY PARTS.
NOT ALLOWED TO EXPORT
ANY TYPE OF SHARK PRODUCT.
AND IT'S THIS STANCE
THAT THIS COUNTRY HAS TAKEN
THAT'S SPREADING
AROUND THE WORLD.

Back in the boat, Ronald says THAT WAS AMAZING.
I NEVER SAW ANYTHING LIKE IT.
I HAD A GREAT TIME.

The woman in her twenties says CRAZY. AWESOME.

The man in his fifties says THE FAMILY SURVIVED.

The woman in her twenties says THE PART THAT WAS FREAKY
WAS WHEN IT SWAM STRAIGHT AT YOU
AND THEN AT THE LAST MINUTE
LIKE IT SWAM AWAY.
BUT GOT USED TO IT.
SOUNDS WEIRD BUT YOU DID.

The woman in her forties says YEAH, IT WAS REALLY,
REALLY AWESOME.
I GOT HIT ON THE HEAD
WITH A TAIL.

Woman 7 says SO COOL.
THEY'RE SO CLOSE TO YOU.
YOU WANT TO TOUCH THEM SO BAD
BUT THEN YOU'RE REALLY SCARED TO
SO YOU DON'T.
I WANTED TO SO BAD
BUT I WAS LIKE,
"NO, I LIKE THIS ARM!"

The woman in her forties says NOW WE CAN SAY WE'VE CHECKED
THIS ONE OFF THE BUCKET LIST.
THAT WAS AWESOME.

Woman 7 says ONE OF THE COOLEST THINGS
I'VE EVER DONE, EASILY.

A Male Team Member says GIVE IT UP FOR OUR
FEARLESS FEEDER RUDY!

[cheers]

Rudy laughs as he returns to the boat.

The woman in her forties says IT REALLY WAS COOL.
VERY, VERY COOL.

The Narrator says STUART COVE'S
TWO CHILDREN, TRAVIS
AND YOUNGER SISTER SASHA,
HAVE BEEN DIVING WITH
AND FEEDING SHARKS FOR YEARS.

Sasha stands in a ship. A person helps her putting on her diving suit.

In her early teens and with long blond hair, Sasha says I WORE THESE MY FIRST TIME.

The Narrator says A BIT OF SIBLING
RIVALRY DEVELOPED BETWEEN THEM
WHEN TRAVIS WAS RECOGNIZED
AS THE WORLD'S YOUNGEST
SHARK FEEDER.
IT WASN'T LONG BEFORE
NINE YEAR OLD SASHA
DECIDED SHE HAD TO OUTDO
HER OLDER BROTHER.

The caption changes to "2009."

In a clip, Michelle says WHAT ARE
YOU DOING TODAY?

A younger Sasha says I'M BREAKING MY BROTHER'S
WORLD RECORD.

Michelle says AND WHAT IS THAT?

Sasha says YOUNGEST SHARK FEEDER.

The caption changes to "Sasha Cove."

At present, Sasha says I'VE JUST BEEN DIVING
AND WITH SHARKS
SINCE I WAS REALLY,
REALLY LITTLE BECAUSE
GROWING UP WITH MY FAMILY BEING
IN THE BUSINESS THAT THEY ARE
I SPENT MOST OF MY TIME
ON THE WATER EITHER SWIMMING
AND SNORKELLING WITH THE SHARKS.

In the clip, a young Sasha travels in a boat.

Sasha says HI!

Off screen, Michelle says WHAT ARE YOU
FEELING RIGHT NOW?

Sasha says EXCITED AND HAPPY.
WHICH ONES ARE MINE?
[laughter]

The clip ends.

At present, Sasha says MY BROTHER WAS THE YOUNGEST
SHARK FEEDER IN THE WORLD.
EVERY LIVING MOMENT HE WOULD
JUST RUB IT IN MY FACE WITH IT.
HE WAS THE YOUNGEST FEEDER IN
THE WORLD AND I HADN'T EVEN FED.
AND SO I WAS LIKE, "NO,
THIS JUST CAN'T HAPPEN."
AND SO ON MY TENTH BIRTHDAY,
I GOT OUT OF SCHOOL
ON A WEDNESDAY EARLY,
AND I WENT DOWN AND I FED.
I WAS SO SCARED.

Stuart says MY KIDS STARTED DIVING
AT A VERY YOUNG AGE,
STARTED SNORKELLING WITH SHARKS
AT A YOUNG AGE
AND DIVING WITH SHARKS FROM WHEN
THEY WERE EIGHT YEARS OLD.
SO MY DAUGHTER SASHA, THEY'RE
VERY COMPETITIVE MY CHILDREN,
WHEN SHE WAS TEN, SHE WANTED
TO BE THE YOUNGEST SHARK FEEDER
IN THE WORLD SO WE TOOK HER
IN THE EARLY MORNING
AND LET HER FEED THE SHARKS.
AND SO RIGHT NOW, AS IT STANDS,
I THINK SHE'S THE YOUNGEST
SHARK FEEDER IN THE WORLD.

The Narrator says ONE OF SASHA COVE'S
FRIENDS FROM HER SCHOOL
IN CANADA IS ALSO
A VETERAN SCUBA DIVER,
AT ONLY 14.
FILMMAKER DANNY MAURO'S DAUGHTER
SAMANTHA, WAS ALSO EXPOSED
TO THE UNDERWATER WORLD
AT A VERY YOUNG AGE.

The caption changes to "Samantha Mauro." Samantha has long blond hair.

Samantha says MY DAD, EVER SINCE
I WAS IN A HIGHCHAIR,
HAS BEEN SHOWING ME HIS SHARK
DOCUMENTARIES AND TEACHING ME
TO LOVE THE WATER AND THE OCEAN
AND ALL THE ANIMALS IN IT.

The caption changes to "Danny Mauro. Filmaker." Danny is in his late forties, with a beard and receding brown hair. He wears a checked white and coral shirt.

Danny says I HAVE TO ADMIT
THAT SAM SEEMS TO BE
A BIT OF AN ADRENALIN JUNKIE.
IF IT'S NOT CLIMBING TREES
OR DOING FLIPS ON A TRAMPOLINE,
SHE'S ALWAYS INTO
DOING SOMETHING SCARY.
I'VE BEEN FILMING SHARKS
FOR ABOUT 20 YEARS NOW
AND I THINK THROUGH OSMOSIS
SHE'S KIND OF DEVELOPED
THIS FASCINATION WITH SHARKS.
AND I THINK SHE WANTED
TO TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
AND THE NEXT LEVEL IS TO
ACTUALLY GET IN THE SHARK SUIT
AND GET RIGHT IN WITH THE SHARKS
AND TRY AND FEED THEM.

The Narrator says AFTER HEARING
STORIES ABOUT SASHA
AND HER SHARK OBSESSED FAMILY,
THE TWO GIRLS FORGED
A COMMON BOND.
IT WAS ONLY A MATTER OF TIME
BEFORE SAM DECIDED THAT
SHARK FEEDING WAS SOMETHING
THAT SHE HAD TO DO.

The caption changes to "Atlantis Resort. Nassau, Bahamas."

A girl watches sharks swim in a huge modern aquarium.

Sasha says THERE'S ONE THERE.

The Narrator says TO GET MORE
ACCUSTOMED TO SHARKS
BEFORE ATTEMPTING TO FEED THEM,
SASHA ENCOURAGED SAM TO TRY
A SLIGHTLY TAMER ENCOUNTER.
AT THE FAMED ATLANTIS RESORT,
GUESTS CAN WALK
WITH CARIBBEAN REEF
AND NURSE SHARKS.

Santiba is in his mid-thirties, with a moustache and short curly black hair. He wears a blue polo shirt.

Santiba says FIRST I WANT
TO INTRODUCE MYSELF.
MY NAME IS SANTIBA, OKAY.
I'M GOING TO BE BASICALLY
ONE OF THE INSTRUCTORS.
I'M GOING TO GIVE YOU
THE BRIEFING THAT LETS YOU KNOW
EXACTLY WHAT'S GOING TO BE
GOING ON INSIDE THIS TANK.
FIRST OF ALL,
YOU HAVE 22 SHARKS INSIDE
THIS VERY SAME TANK HERE, OKAY.
NOT AGGRESSIVE SO NOTHING
TO WORRY ABOUT.
WE HAVE THE CARIBBEAN
REED SHARK...

The Narrator says THERE SEEMS TO BE
A BOUNDLESS FASCINATION
WITH SHARKS, ESPECIALLY
FOR KIDS.
PERHAPS THEY DON'T HAVE SUCH
DEEP SEATED FEARS AS ADULTS.
MOST OF THEM NEVER SAW JAWS.

Santiba says OKAY, GUYS,
SO BASICALLY THAT'S IT
FOR THE BRIEFING. ARE YOU ALL
READY FOR A GREAT SHARK DIVE?

Young kids say YEAH!

Santiba says ALL RIGHT,
LET'S DO IT!

Sasha and Samantha stand in a pool.

Sasha says SAM, THIS IS GOING TO BE A
CAKE WALK COMPARED TO WHAT WE'RE
DOING TOMORROW. WE'RE GOING TO
GET IN THE SUIT AND FEED 'EM.

Samantha says OH!

The Narrator says LIKE SCUBA DIVERS,
GUESTS ON THE SHARK WALK
BREATHE COMPRESSED AIR.
BUT INSTEAD OF USING REGULATORS,
THEY BREATHE WITH A
STATE OF THE ART HELMET.
GLASS VIEWING PORTS
IN THE HELMETS
PROVIDE AN UNOBSTRUCTED VIEW
OF THE RESIDENT SHARKS.

Sasha and Samantha walk in the pool wearing special helmets.

The Narrator says AT THE RESORT'S MAYAN TEMPLE,
VISITORS CAN ALSO
ROCKET THROUGH THE SHARK EXHIBIT
ON A WATER SLIDE,
OR SLOWLY RAFT DOWN A RIVER
WHILE SURROUNDED BY SHARKS.

(pop music plays)

Samantha walks out of the pool and says WHAT A DIFFERENCE.

Santiba says HOW WAS IT?

Samantha says IT WAS GOOD.

A man says HOW WAS YOUR DIVE, GIRLS?

Sasha says AWESOME.
CERTAINLY A DIFFERENT
EXPERIENCE THAN DIVING.

Samantha says IT WAS REALLY NEAT
TO HAVE THE HELMETS ON.

Sasha says YEAH, TOMORROW WE'RE GOING
TO PUT THE CHAIN MAIL ON
AND DO THE REAL THING.

Samantha says HAH, I'M EXCITED.

Sasha says AWESOME!

Stuart says ONE OF THE MOST
COVETED JOBS IN THE DIVE
INDUSTRY AND PARTICULARLY
HERE AT STUART COVE'S,
IS BECOMING A SHARK FEEDER.
NOT ONLY IS IT
POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS
BUT IT'S VERY EXCITING.
YOU GET UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL
WITH THESE ANIMALS.
AND ONE OF THE THINGS
WE'RE VERY PROUD OF IS
WE HAVE WOMEN SHARK FEEDERS.
IT'S A MACHO TYPE THING.
YOU'RE GETTING DOWN THERE,
YOU'RE FEEDING THESE SHARKS,
UP TO 40 AT A TIME, YOU'RE
GETTING BEAT UP, POUNDED.
IT'S LIKE BEING A LINEBACKER.
AND FOR WOMEN TO DO IT
IS REALLY QUITE
SOMETHING SPECIAL.

The caption changes to "Charlotte Faulkner. Shark Feeder." Charlotte is in her twenties. She has long blond hair and wears a pink T-shirt and black shorts.

Charlotte says I WAS WORKING
A JOB I HATED IN ENGLAND
AND I WAS A DIVER.
AND I DECIDED, WHY NOT
GO PROFESSIONAL,
FOUND STUART COVE ONLINE AND
THEY ACCEPTED MY APPLICATION
AND HERE I AM.
ONCE YOU'RE HERE AT
STUART COVE FOR A WHILE,
YOU GET THE OPPORTUNITY
TO TRAIN AS A SHARK FEEDER.

The Narrator says AND WHEN
YOU'RE A SHARK FEEDER,
YOU HAVE TO GET YOUR
HANDS A BIT DIRTY.

Standing by a deck, Charlotte points to fish pieces on the ground and says WE'RE GOING TO CUT
THE BITS NICE AND SMALL
TO ABOUT THE SIZE OF A HAND.
THE REASON WE DO THAT IS
SO ANY KIND OF SIZE SHARK
CAN CONSUME THE PIECE
WITHOUT DROPPING IT.
OBVIOUSLY WE DON'T WANT
BAIT TO BE FLYING AROUND
WHEN WE'VE GOT CUSTOMERS
IN THE SITUATION
SO WE MAKE SURE THAT
ANY KIND OF SIZE SHARK
CAN JUST SWALLOW
THE PIECE WHOLE.
WE ONLY FEED THEM
A VERY SMALL AMOUNT.
ONLY A COUPLE OF
INDIVIDUALS GET FED.
AND IT'S ONLY FOUR TO FIVE
PIECES AMONGST 40 SHARKS.
SO WE'RE GIVING THEM ONLY UNDER
A PERCENT OF WHAT THEY EAT
EVERYDAY SO IT'S ACTUALLY JUST
LIKE A LITTLE REWARD FOR THEM.
WE'RE JUST REWARDING THEIR
POLITE FEEDING BEHAVIOUR
WHEN THEY'RE AROUND US.
THIS ISN'T EXACTLY THE MOST
GLAMOROUS PART OF THE JOB.
YOU GO HOME SMELLING
LIKE FISH AND CHAIN MAIL.
NOT EXACTLY VERY NICE
BUT YOU DO GET USED TO IT.
ON A REALLY HOT DAY IT CAN GET
PRETTY STINKY AROUND HERE.

The Narrator says BEFORE ATTEMPTING
TO FEED REEF SHARKS,
SASHA COVE AND SAMANTHA MAURO
JOINED CHARLOTTE FAULKNER
ON A SCHEDULED SHARK DIVE.

Sasha says HI, I'M SASHA.

Charlotte says HI, SASHA, NICE MEETING YOU.
I'M CHARLOTTE.

Sasha says HI.

Charlotte says HELLO, NICE TO MEET YOU, SAM.
I'M CHARLOTTE.
ARE YOU EXCITED?

Sasha says YEAH, SUPER EXCITED.

Samantha says IT'S MY FIRST
BAHAMIAN SHARK DIVE.

Charlotte says ALL RIGHT, GUYS, HAVE YOU
GOT ALL YOUR GEAR TOGETHER?
EVERYTHING'S ON THE BOAT?

Sasha and Samantha say YEAH.

Charlotte says ALL RIGHT, LET'S GO. WE'RE
GOING TO HEAD OUT TO THE SITE.

Sasha says AWESOME.

The Narrator says ALL SHARK FEEDERS
AT STUART COVE'S
ARE REQUIRED TO DON
PROTECTIVE CHAIN MAIL SUITS.

On a boat, Charlotte says THIS IS CHAIN MAIL,
MADE OF TITANIUM.
IT'S ALL HAND-MADE SO
IT'S VERY, VERY EXPENSIVE.
EACH CHAIN IS INTERWOVEN
BY HAND SO VERY COOL STUFF.
AND SOMETIMES THE TEETH DO PASS
THROUGH BUT IT DOES PROTECT US
FROM THE MAJORITY OF ANY BITE
THAT DOES HAPPEN.

Wearing the suit, Charlotte does a funny strength pose and says ARRRGH!

The Narrator says DETAILED BRIEFINGS ARE ALSO PART
OF THE JOB DESCRIPTION.

Charlotte says NOW THERE'S A NUMBER ONE
RULE ON THIS DIVE,
IS NO HAND MOVEMENT AT ALL.
IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT WE DON'T
MOVE OUR HANDS AROUND LIKE SO.
OUR HANDS ARE GOING TO BE
CROSSED ON THE RAILING
OR HOLDING A CAMERA LIKE THAT.
THAT'S THE ONLY WAYS
YOU'RE GOING TO BE, OKAY.
ONCE YOU'RE ALL BACK ON BOARD
ALL SAFELY, I CAN COME ON BACK
HOPEFULLY WITH ALL
MY FINGERS AND TOES.
OKAY?
I NEVER GET SICK OF THIS.
I'VE DONE IT 100 TIMES MORE THAN
THEM BUT IT'S ALWAYS DIFFERENT.
THE SHARK'S BEHAVIOUR
IS DIFFERENT EACH TIME
SO YOU LEARN SOMETHING
EACH TIME.

The Narrator says THE KIDS
AND OTHER GUESTS
DESCEND TO THE FEEDING SITE
BEFORE THE ACTION BEGINS.
IT'S SHOW TIME.
THE RAY OF HOPE SHIPWRECK
IS THE IDEAL STAGING GROUND
FOR A DIVE LIKE THIS.
IT'S A RELATIVELY SMALL
AND CONTAINED SPACE
WHERE DIVERS CAN GATHER AROUND
THE PORT DECK RAILING.
IT'S STILL CLOSE TO THE ACTION,
YET FAR ENOUGH AWAY
TO SAFELY OBSERVE THE FEEDING.

Charlotte says WE TRY AND GET
THEM TO DO POLITE FEEDING.
POLITE FEEDING BEHAVIOUR WHERE
THERE'S NO AGGRESSION AT ALL
AROUND HUMANS.
AND THE FOOD THAT WE GIVE THEM
IS LIKE A POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT
FOR THAT POLITE FEEDING
BEHAVIOUR THEY'RE SHOWING US.
AND AS THE FEEDER, WE TRY
AND KEEP THE SHARKS
IN THE POLITE FEEDING BEHAVIOUR
DURING THE WHOLE FEED.

Sasha says SHARKS ARE JUST
SUCH MAJESTIC CREATURES.
THEY LIVE OUT THERE
AND THEY'RE SO STRONG
AND GRACEFUL AND BEAUTIFUL.
AND THEY CAN CAUSE SO MUCH
DAMAGE IF THEY REALLY WANT TO.
BUT THEY REALLY DON'T AND
THEY HAVE SUCH A BAD IMAGE.

Samantha says I FEEL SO STRONGLY ABOUT SHARKS.
THEY ARE MY FAVOURITE
ANIMAL BY FAR.

Sasha, Samantha and other guests watch sharks being fed near a sunken ship.

Charlotte says OUR DIVE CAN CHANGE
PEOPLE ATTITUDES FROM A NEGATIVE
PERCEPTION OF SHARKS
TO A POSITIVE PERCEPTION.
AND TO SEE THIS CHANGE
JUST IN ONE AFTERNOON.
AND THEY COME ON UP
AND THEY JUST HAVE THIS
LOVE AND APPRECIATION
FOR SHARKS.
IT'S SUCH A POSITIVE MESSAGE
WE NEED TO SPREAD.
THE BAHAMAS TRULY ARE
A SHARK HAVEN.

Charlotte climbs back to the boat and says WHOO!
ANOTHER DAY AT THE OFFICE.
WHOO!

Sasha says SO NOW THAT YOU'VE SEEN THE
SHARKS, TOMORROW WE'LL TEACH YOU
HOW TO FEED THEM AND IT'S
GOING TO BE PRETTY AWESOME.

Samantha says COOL!

Sasha says YEAH.

Charlotte says SO SAM, HOW WAS IT THEN?

Samantha says OH, THAT WAS AMAZING.
I DON'T KNOW HOW YOU
CAN DO THAT SO CLOSE.

Charlotte says THAT'S THE FIRST STEP,
GETTING ON ONE SIDE
OF THE RAILING.
NOW YOU'RE GOING TO COME
ON THE OTHER SIDE AND FEED THEM.
WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Samantha says OH, I'M EXCITED.

Sasha says IT'S GOING TO BE AWESOME.

Charlotte says A ONCE
IN A LIFETIME THING.

The Narrator says AFTER THE ATLANTIS
SHARK WALK EXPERIENCE,
AND A THRILLING DEMONSTRATION
OF SHARK FEEDING,
THE TWO 14 YEAR OLD GIRLS
WERE READY
FOR A BIT MORE EXCITEMENT.

Sasha says THIS IS YOUR BIG DAY.
LAST CHANCE TO BACK OUT.

Samantha says WELL, THIS IS MY FIRST TIME
ACTUALLY FEEDING
SO I'M A BIT NERVOUS.

Sasha says ARE YOU SURE?
LAST CHANCE.

Samantha says THIS IS A LITTLE BIT
OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE.

The Narrator says AUSTRALIAN SHARK
FEEDER, TERRI HARRISON WAS
CHARGED WITH HELPING THE GIRLS
GEAR UP AND TO KEEP THEM SAFE.
OLDER BROTHER TRAVIS ALSO JOINED
THE GROUP AS A SAFETY DIVER.

Terri Harrison jumps onto a boat. She is in her late twenties with shoulder-length blond hair. She wears a cap, a pink T-shirt and black shorts.

Stuart says MY KIDS GREW UP AROUND
THE DIVE SHOP HERE AND SO
FROM THE TIME THEY COULD WORK
THEY WERE AWARE OF SHARKS.
AND THEY HAVE NO FEAR OF SHARKS.
YOU KNOW, IT'S SO IMPORTANT
THESE YOUNGSTERS
GETTING OUT THERE AND
INTERACTING WITH SHARKS.
IF THE KIDS AREN'T SCARED OF
SHARKS AND THE KIDS ARE SHOWING
THAT THE SHARKS AREN'T
JUST INDISCRIMINATE KILLERS
THAT THE MEDIA HAD SHOWN
OVER THE LAST FEW DECADES,
WE KNOW THAT IF SHARKS ARE
INTERACTED WITH IN A SENSIBLE
WAY, THEY'RE NOT GOING TO EAT
YOU, NOT GOING TO BITE YOU.

The caption changes to "Terri Harrison. Shark Feeder."

Terri says TODAY WE'VE GOT SOMETHING
REAL SPECIAL HAPPENING.
WE'VE GOT TWO LITTLE
GNARLY CHICKS COMING OUT
AND THEY'RE ONLY 14 YEARS OF AGE
SO IF I HAD THIS OPPORTUNITY,
I DEFINITELY WOULD
HAVE JUMPED AT IT.

Sasha says YOU KNOW, IT'S SORT OF
LIKE PLAYING FOOTBALL EXCEPT
THE OTHER PLAYERS HAVE TEETH
AND THEY CAN GET REALLY VICIOUS.

Samantha says HA, I BET!

Talking to Samantha, Terri says IF YOU ARE BITTEN
ON THE ARM OR ANYWHERE,
JUST, I'LL BE THERE
SO I WILL STOP IT
FROM DOING WHATEVER IT NEEDS TO.
BUT JUST PULL YOUR ARM
NICE AND CLOSE, OKAY.
THESE SHARKS ARE SCAVENGERS
SO AS SOON AS SOMETHING STARTS
FIGHTING BACK, THEY'RE LIKE,
"NAH, I AIN'T INTO THIS."
AND THEY TEND TO LET GO.
BUT REMEMBER,
WE'RE GOING TO BE WEARING
CHAIN MAIL, OKAY.
THE IDEA OF THE CHAIN MAIL
IS WHEN THE SHARK BITES DOWN
ALL THESE TINY LINKS COME
TOGETHER AND STOP THE TEETH
FROM PENETRATING OUR SKIN.
A LOT OF THE TIME
IT WORKS, OKAY.
IF A SHARK JUMPS ONTO YOUR ARM
AND HIS TEETH GET CAUGHT,
HE'S GOING TO PANIC.
SO WHEN THEY PANIC,
THEY USUALLY PULL AWAY
AND THE TEETH GET STUCK.
SO WE NEED TO BE
MINDFUL OF THIS.

Terri helps Travis put on the diving suit.

Terri says YOU HAPPY?
DO YOU WANT THIS PART HERE?

Travis says YEAH, THIS ONE HERE.

The Narrator says BOTH SAMANTHA
AND SASHA WERE A BIT SMALLER
THAN TYPICAL SHARK FEEDERS
SO SOME MINOR MODIFICATIONS
HAD TO BE MADE
TO THEIR PROTECTIVE SUITS.

Grabbing Sasha's right hand, Terri says WE TAPE THE HANDS
THIS TIME SO THEN THE CHAIN
DOESN'T FALL OFF AS SHE
HAS REALLY LITTLE HANDS.
SO PUT THE GLOVES UNDERNEATH
SO THE CHAIN WON'T RUB ON HER,
AND THEN THE TAPE JUST KEEPS
THE CHAIN IN PLACE.
IT LOOKS TOUGH.

Sasha laughs.

The Narrator says EVEN STUART
HAD TO WEAR CHAIN MAIL.

Stuart says I MIGHT NOT GET BIT BUT I
MIGHT DROWN WITH THIS STUFF ON.
IT'S SO HEAVY.
I'M USUALLY SO MACHO
I DON'T NEED THIS STUFF.
I LAUGH AT SHARK'S TEETH.
HA HA HA!

Travis says NOW YOU WON'T
BE LAUGHING WHEN YOU GET
A NICE BITE IN THE CALF.

Terri says WE MAY HAVE OUR FUTURE
SHARK FEEDER HERE, DARLING.
YOU'LL BE BACK NO DOUBT.

Samantha laughs nervously.

Terri says NOW, NOW.

Helping Samantha with her suit, Terri says PERFECT.
OKAY, FINGERS.
BEAUTIFUL.

Sasha says THAT IS MY SPEAR FOR THE DAY.
IT'S LIKE THE HILT IS ACTUALLY
THE HILT OF A SWORD
SO I'LL PROTECT SAM PRETTY WELL.

Samantha says DON'T STAB ME WITH
THAT, SASHA.

Sasha chuckles.

Stuart says SO RIGHT BEHIND US IS
THE RAY OF HOPE SHIPWRECK.
WHAT WE'RE GOING TO DO
IS WE'RE GOING TO GO DOWN
WITH THE BAIT BOX.
I'LL BRING IT DOWN TO THE BOTTOM
AND THEN I'M GOING TO LET
YOU GUYS FEED A FEW PIECES
EACH TO THE SHARKS.
AND WHAT YOU'RE GOING TO DO
IS YOU'RE GOING TO SPEAR
A PIECE OF FISH
AND WE'RE GOING TO BRING IT UP.
WE DON'T WANT TO HOLD IT UP
LIKE THIS SO THE SHARK
SWIMS DOWN AND IMPALES IT.
WE WANT IT TO TAKE IT
OFF TO THE SIDE.
NOW A SHARK MIGHT BITE YOUR HAND
AND THEIR TEETH ARE SMALL ENOUGH
THAT THEY CAN GET TANGLED
IN THE CHAIN MAIL.
IF THAT HAPPENS YOU WANT
TO LOCK, HOLD TIGHT,
BECAUSE THEY'LL START
TO ROLL AND SHAKE
AND THEY CAN ACTUALLY
CAUSE TISSUE DAMAGE.
SO IF YOU JUST HOLD TIGHT,
IT'S EVENTUALLY GOING TO LET GO.
TERRI'S GOING TO TAKE YOU DOWN
AND PICK A GOOD SPOT ON
THE WRECK WHERE YOU'LL PROBABLY
HAVE PROTECTION BEHIND YOU.
THEN I'LL BRING THE BAIT DOWN.

Samantha puts on a helmet and says I HOPE THIS FITS PROPERLY.

Sasha says OKAY, SAM, THERE'S NO
TURNING BACK NOW. YOU READY?

Samantha says I'M DEFINITELY NOT READY.

Sasha says TOO BAD, SO SAD.
LET'S GET IN.

Talking to the camera, Samantha says DAD, DID YOU TELL MOM
I WAS DOING THIS?

The camera shakes to signal no.

(rock music plays)

Stuart says HEY, TRAVIS,
YOU READY TO GO?

Travis says ALL RIGHT, DAD, LET'S DO IT.

They dive in.

The Narrator says STUART COVE
QUICKLY INITIATES THE FEEDING.
FOLLOWING A FEW DEMONSTRATIONS,
HE PASSES THE HONOURS TO SASHA.
IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME,
THE ACTION RAMPS UP, WAY UP.
AFTER SOME HIGH ADRENALINE
SHARK FEEDING,
IT'S FINALLY SAMANTHA'S TURN.

Sasha says SAM DOWN THERE WAS AMAZING.
SHE'S JUST SUCH
A NATURAL WITH THEM.
SHE DID NOT FLINCH AT ALL
WHEN WE WENT DOWN THERE.
SHE JUST WENT STRAIGHT INTO IT.

The Narrator says IT GOES PRETTY WELL
FOR THE NOVICE SHARK FEEDER
UNTIL SHE GETS BITTEN
ON THE HAND.

A slow motion black and white clip shows the moment a shark bites Samantha's hand.

The Narrator says FORTUNATELY, THE CHAIN MAIL
DID ITS JOB
AND PROTECTED HER FROM INJURY.

Samantha says IT WAS INCREDIBLE.
MY FIRST TIME FEEDING EVER
AND IT WAS A VERY
SCARY EXPERIENCE
BUT I'M SO HAPPY I DID IT.

The Narrator says SOME OF THESE SHARKS
WERE ACCIDENTALLY CAUGHT
BY FISHERMEN.
A FEW OF THE ANIMALS
STILL HAVE FISH HOOKS
IMBEDDED IN THEIR MOUTHS.
THE ONLY WAY TO REMOVE THEM
IS TO EMPLOY TONIC IMMOBILITY.
TEMPORARILY INCAPACITATED,
IT'S QUICK WORK FOR STUART
AND HIS SON TRAVIS
TO REMOVE THE HOOKS.

They all go back to the boat.

Stuart says MAN, IT WAS CRAZY.
THE KIDS WERE FABULOUS.
THERE WERE SO MANY SHARKS.

The caption changes to "Travis."

Travis says THAT WAS RIDICULOUS.
A LOT OF ENERGY DOWN THERE.

Samantha says IT WAS REALLY COOL.
THAT WAS PRETTY SCARY
BUT IT WAS REALLY FUN.

Stuart says SAM, YOU DID FANTASTIC.
GOSH, THEY DIDN'T BITE YOU
TOO HARD, DID THEY?

Samantha says YEAH, ONE BIT ME.

Sasha says THAT'S THE TOOTH
OF THE SHARK THAT BIT SAM.

Terri says YEAH, SO, UH, THAT
SITUATION WAS PRETTY UNUSUAL.
YOU CAN SEE ACTUALLY
THE TOOTH MARK RIGHT HERE,
WHERE THE CHAIN LINKS
HAVE COME APART.
AS THE SHARK BIT DOWN, THAT
LITTLE TOOTH GOT STUCK IN THERE.
BUT NOW, SAM'S GOT A SOUVENIR
AND A COOL STORY AS WELL.

Samantha says YEAH, FOR SURE. I'LL
SHOW ALL MY FRIENDS AT HOME.

Sasha says WE GOT SOME PRETTY AWESOME
STORIES TO TELL AT SCHOOL,
DEFINITELY.

Terri says THE GIRLS DID AMAZING.
WE HAVE TWO FUTURE FEEDERS
FOR SURE HERE.

[camera clicks]
A series of pictures of the girls feeding the sharks flashes by.

Danny says STUART, WHAT'S
WITH THE TWO COFFEES?

Stuart says IT'S EARLY
IN THE MORNING
AND I LIKE TO BE AWAKE
WHEN I FLY.
TODAY WE'RE GOING TO LOAD
ONTO THE BARON.
WE'RE GOING TO FLY UP TO
GRAND BAHAMA TO FREEPORT
AND THEN WE'RE GOING TO GO OUT
IN A SPECIALIZED BOAT.
WE'RE GOING 25 MILES
TO A PLACE
WHERE WE KNOW THERE'S
TIGER SHARKS.

Jim and Stuart shake hands by a plane. Jim is in his mid-forties, clean-shaven with brown hair. He wears glasses and a beige hoodie.

Jim says HEY, STU, HOW YOU DOING?

Stuart says GOOD, JIM.
YOU READY FOR THIS FLIGHT
UP TO TIGER BEACH?

Jim says I CAN'T WAIT
TO MEET THOSE TIGERS.

Stuart says OKAY, WE'LL GO SEE
THE BIG SHARKS.
WE'RE GOING TO GO ON
THIS LITTLE PLANE HERE.
THIS MAY BE MORE DANGEROUS THAN
DIVING WITH THOSE BIG SHARKS.

The Narrator says SPREAD OUT OVER
AN IMMENSE AREA, THE BEST WAY
TO TRAVEL THROUGHOUT
THE BAHAMAS IS BY PLANE.
MANY OF THE ISLANDS
HAVE TINY LANDING STRIPS
SUITABLE ONLY FOR
SMALLER AIRCRAFT.

Stuart says I BECAME VERY
INTERESTED IN SHARKS AFTER
WORKING ON A COUPLE OF THE BOND
FILMS WHERE WE WERE WRANGLING
TIGER SHARKS AND THEN CREATING
SHARK DIVING EXPERIENCES
OFF IN NEW PROVIDENCE.
I WAS SO EXCITED ABOUT IT,
I WANTED TO GET INVOLVED
WITH DIFFERENT SPECIES
AND THE BAHAMAS HAS SUCH
A HEALTHY POPULATION OF SHARKS
AND HAVING THE PLANE
ENABLES ME TO FLY TO DIFFERENT
ISLANDS TO INTERACT
WITH THESE DIFFERENT SHARKS.

The Narrator says FROM GRAND BAHAMA,
EVEN WITH A FAST BOAT,
IT'S STILL A LENGTHY JOURNEY
TO INFAMOUS TIGER BEACH.

Now, Stuart and Jim stand in a boat.

Stuart says SO WHAT WE'VE
LEARNT ABOUT THE TIGERS
IS THEY'RE VERY
OPPORTUNISTIC EATERS.
WE WANT TO HAVE
A LOT OF AWARENESS
WHEN THE TIGERS ARE AROUND.
AS LONG AS THEY'RE
SWIMMING AROUND US
AND IF THEY COME TOO CLOSE
YOU CAN PUSH THEM AWAY.
BUT I THINK IF THEY GET
A LITTLE BIT OF A TASTE,
YOU COULD HAVE A PROBLEM.

Jim says GOTCHA.

Stuart says YOU GUYS READY TO GO?
LET'S ROLL!

Stuart drives the boat.

Stuart says MY FATHER WAS AN AVID DIVER
WHEN I WAS A WEE ONE
AND HIS BEST FRIEND OWNED
A DIVE SHOP IN NASSAU
AND THEY TAUGHT ME
TO DIVE WHEN I WAS FIVE.
WHEN I WAS A YOUNG MAN
ON VACATION,
I'D ALWAYS WORK ON THEIR
DIVE BOAT AS A GOFER.
YOU KNOW, GO FOR THIS,
GO FOR THAT,
HAND THE FINS OUT TO THE GUESTS
AND THEY WOULD LET ME DIVE.
I JUST GO OFF AND
DIVE BY MYSELF.

In the boat, Stuart says WE'RE DOING 32 MILES AN HOUR.

Talking to the camera, Stuart says AS A YOUNG TEENAGER,
WE WOULD GO OUT AND WE'D
MEET TOURISTS AND MEET FRIENDS
AND WE WOULD TEACH THEM TO DIVE.
SO BY THE TIME I WAS 18 OR SO
I WAS A WELL-SEASONED
DIVE INSTRUCTOR.

Stuart drops an anchor.

Stuart says THIS IS WHAT WE CALL
BAHAMA BLUE.
THE PRETTIEST WATER
IN THE WORLD.

A Young Male Team Member says GOT A LEMON SHARK ALREADY.
HERE'S SOME FRESH WAHOO
WHAT SOME GUY HAS JUST CAUGHT.
THIS WE'RE GOING
TO USE TO CHUM WITH.

Stuart points to the sea and says YOU HAVE RIGHT HERE AN EIGHT
TO TEN FOOT LEMON SHARK
AND WE CAN HAVE UP TO 40 OF
THESE ANIMALS AT THE SAME TIME.

The caption changes to "Jim Kozmik. Underwater Cameraman."

Jim says WELL, YOU KNOW, THIS IS
A LITTLE MORE SERIOUS
DIVING TODAY.
WE HAVE TO WATCH OUR BACK.
TIGER SHARKS ARE ONE
OF THE TOP PREDATORS,
LIKE A WHITE SHARK IN SOME WAYS.

Stuart says ONE OF THE MAIN
ANIMALS OF PREY
FOR THE TIGERS HERE
ARE THE TURTLES.
AND YOU CAN SEE THEM SNEAK UP
ON THE TURTLES AND THEN
THEY'LL BITE THEIR FINS
AND TRY TO GET UNDERNEATH
BUT THEY SNEAK UP ON THEM.
I THINK THAT'S WHAT THEY DO
WITH US BECAUSE WE ALWAYS
FIND THEM SNEAKING UP
ON THE DIVERS.
THEY COME FROM BEHIND.

Sitting on the boat, Stuart says I'M GOING TO WATCH YOUR BACK.

Jim says OKAY.

Stuart says YOU WATCH MINE TOO THOUGH
CAUSE THEY'RE ALWAYS
SNEAKING UP BEHIND.
I'M NOT GETTING ANY YOUNGER
BUT DIVING WITH THESE SHARKS,
MAN, IT'S THE BEST
THING I CAN DO.
I NEVER GET BORED OF IT.

[water gurgles]
Stuart and Jim dive in.

Stuart says THE TIGER BEACH EXPERIENCE,
WE HAD A SPECTACULAR DAY.
THE WATER WAS FLAT CALM.
AS SOON AS WE GOT TO LOCATION
WE HAD TWO LARGE LEMON SHARKS.

Jim says STU SET THE BOX UP
AT THE BOTTOM AND START GENTLY
PUTTING THE BAIT INTO THE WATER.
ONE BIG TIGER FEMALE CAME ALONG
AND THEN A FEW MORE
LEMONS CAME ALONG.
"THIS IS PRETTY EASY.
I'M DOING GREAT."

Stuart says WITHIN TEN MINUTES
WE HAD A BIG TIGER SHARK
AND WE STARTED TO INTERACT
WITH THOSE THREE SHARKS.
WHEN WE GET IN THE WATER WITH
THE TIGERS AND THE LEMON SHARKS,
OBVIOUSLY WE DRAW THEM TO US
WITH A BAIT BOX AND WE TAKE BAIT
OUT OF THE BOX AND
WE FEED IT TO THE SHARKS.
IT'S VERY CONTROVERSIAL BUT
YOU'RE NOT GOING TO GET THE KIND
OF INTERACTION AND CLOSE
ENCOUNTERS WITHOUT USING FOOD
AND CHUM AND BAITING AND
BAITING IN THESE SHARKS.
WE BAIT THEM IN SO CLOSE THAT
WE CAN ACTUALLY TOUCH THEM
AND RUB THEM AND
THEY SEEM TO ENJOY IT.

Jim says ALL THE SUDDEN
TWO TIGERS, THREE TIGERS,
FOUR TIGERS, 15, 20 LEMONS.
I'M GOING, "GEE, THIS
COULD LOOK REALLY GOOD."
AND THEN THEY START COMING
TWO FEET OFF THE BOTTOM.
AND I'M LIKE, "ARE THEY
COMING AT MY FEET?"
SO I'VE GOT THE CAMERA RIGHT IN
THEIR FACE, FOLLOWING THEM AND
THEN THEY'RE CROSSING EACH OTHER
RIGHT IN FRONT OF MY FEET.
I'M GOING, "THIS IS OKAY,
RIGHT, STU?"
"OH, YEAH, IT'S GREAT, JIM.
KEEP GOING, YOU'RE DOING GREAT."
AND THEN AFTER A WHILE
I'M SPINNING LIKE A TOP
TRYING TO KEEP AN EYE
ON THESE THINGS.
SO IT GOES FROM
CONTROLLED SHOOTING
TO TOTALLY UNCONTROLLED
SHOOTING.

As they speak on the boat, fast clips show them diving among sharks.

Stuart says YOU'RE TRYING
TO WATCH A TIGER SHARK,
AND THERE'S ONE OVER HERE
AND ONE OVER THERE,
AND ALL OF A SUDDEN THERE'S ONE
GOING BETWEEN YOUR LEGS
FROM BEHIND.
FANTASTIC.

The Narrator says A SOLITARY,
MOSTLY NOCTURNAL PREDATOR,
TIGER SHARKS ARE SECOND
ONLY TO GREAT WHITES
FOR THE MOST RECORDED
ATTACKS ON HUMANS.
THEY OFTEN ROAM CLOSE TO SHORE
CREATING THE POTENTIAL
FOR ENCOUNTERS WITH SWIMMERS,
SURFERS AND DIVERS.
UNLIKE GREAT WHITES THAT MOSTLY
PREY ON SEALS AND SEA LIONS,
TIGER SHARKS WILL EAT VIRTUALLY
ANYTHING...INCLUDING US.
STUART COVE IS CERTAINLY
WELL ACQUAINTED WITH SHARKS
AND DOESN'T HAVE ANY QUALMS
ABOUT FEEDING THEM.
BUT HANDING OUT PIECES OF FISH
TO 10 TO 15 FOOT TIGER SHARKS,
WITHOUT CHAIN MAIL OR
THE PROTECTION OF A CAGE,
IS A BIT EXTREME
FOR SOME PEOPLE.
BUT THESE ANIMALS ARE HABITUATED
TO THE PRESENCE OF DIVERS
AND USED TO BEING FED.
BUT THE SMALL SCRAPS OF FOOD
THEY RECEIVE ARE A TINY FRACTION
OF THEIR DAILY REQUIREMENTS.
IT'S MORE LIKE HANDING OUT
TREATS TO REALLY BIG DOGS,
DOGS THAT CAN BITE YOU IN HALF.

Stuart says THAT WAS UNBELIEVABLE.
I'VE DONE SEVERAL DIVES
OUT HERE OVER THE YEARS,
AND THAT THERE WAS,
TO ME, THE BEST.

Jim says THAT WAS A FANTASTIC DIVE.
AND I DIDN'T REALLY SEE ANY
SUPER AGGRESSIVENESS DOWN THERE.
AND YOU WERE TOUCHING THEM AND
YOU SEEMED TO BE MOVING THEM ALL
A LITTLE BIT LIKE BIG DOGS,
YOU'LL GET YOUR SHARE.
AND THEY WEREN'T
PUSHING AND SHOVING.
THEY WERE KIND OF LINING
UP FOR THEIR FOOD.

Stuart says WHAT GOT THEM RAMPED UP
THERE NEAR THE END WAS
THERE WAS A BIG PIECE OF WAHOO
CARCASS WHICH IS VERY BLOODY
AND I TOOK IT OUT AND
I WAS TRYING TO GIVE IT
TO THE TIGER SHARK BUT THE LEMON
SHARK GRABBED HOLD OF IT
AND I TOOK IT OFF AND SHOOK IT
AND THE BLOOD WENT EVERYWHERE.
AND YOU COULD SEE
EVERYTHING CHANGED.
ALL THE LEMON SHARKS WENT
AFTER THEM, THE TIGER SHARKS
KIND OF ARCHED THEIR BACKS
A LITTLE BIT AND AT THAT POINT
I THINK I FELT A LITTLE
BIT UNCOMFORTABLE.
BUT MOST OF THE DIVE WITH
THOSE SHARKS ALL AROUND ME,
I MEAN, THEY'RE AROUND MY LEGS,
ON MY FEET,
HAD NO PROTECTION ON MY HANDS,
NO CHAIN MAIL ON MY BODY
BUT I DIDN'T AT ANY TIME
REALLY FEEL IN DANGER.

(music plays)

Smiling, Stuart says WOW, I JUST LOVE MY JOB.

The Narrator says FOR A FISH WITH
SUCH A VICIOUS REPUTATION,
SHARKS IN THE BAHAMAS MAKE
A DISARMING FIRST IMPRESSION.
THEY'RE NOT EXACTLY CUTE
OR CUDDLY BUT SHARKS HERE
SIMPLY GO ABOUT THEIR BUSINESS,
AS MOST PREDATORS DO,
WHEN LEFT UNDISTURBED.
WE'RE GENERALLY NOT ON
THEIR MENU AND THEY VIEW US
AS JUST ANOTHER FISH
ON THE REEF.
TOURISM ACCOUNTS FOR NEARLY HALF
THE GROSS NATIONAL PRODUCT
OF THE BAHAMAS.
AND DIVING IS A MULTI-MILLION
DOLLAR INDUSTRY,
WITH SHARKS AN EVER
INCREASING DRAW.
IT'S ABUNDANTLY CLEAR
THAT A LIVE SHARK HERE
IS WORTH FAR MORE
THAN A DEAD ONE.
THE BAHAMAS IS ONE OF
ONLY FIVE SMALL NATIONS
THAT HAVE COMPLETELY BANNED
COMMERCIAL SHARK FISHING.
MULTI-NATIONAL FLEETS ARE
NOT WELCOME IN THESE WATERS.

Eric says IT REALLY WAS A BIG DEAL
THAT A SMALL COUNTRY
LIKE THE BAHAMAS, YOU KNOW,
JOINING OTHER SMALL COUNTRIES
TOOK ON THE GIANTS AND
DETERMINED THAT THIS
WAS SOMETHING THAT
HAD TO BE DONE.
WE ARE VERY OPTIMISTIC
THAT WE'RE GOING TO BE ABLE
TO INFLUENCE THE LARGER
COUNTRIES AND GET THEM
TO SEE WHY IT'S IMPORTANT
TO PROTECT SHARKS.
I THINK THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT.
AND AS A SMALL COUNTRY,
WE REALLY FEEL PROUD THAT
WE STEPPED UP TO THE PLATE
AND WE SALUTE THE GOVERNMENT.

Stuart says YOU KNOW, HERE IN
THE BAHAMAS WE'RE THE LEADERS
IN SHARK CONSERVATION.
WE REALIZE HOW VALUABLE
A SHARK IS NOT ONLY TO THE
ECONOMY BUT TO THE ENVIRONMENT.
AND HOPEFULLY OTHER COUNTRIES
HAVE REALIZED THAT A LIVE SHARK
IS GOING TO KEEP
THEIR WATERS HEALTHY,
KEEP THEIR FISH
POPULATION STRONG.
A DEAD SHARK ISN'T
GOING TO DO MUCH GOOD.
IT'S ONLY GOOD
FOR THEM ONE TIME.
I'M VERY PROUD TO BE A BAHAMIAN
AND PROUD OF OUR COUNTRY
AND THE STANCE
THAT IT HAS TAKEN
IN CONSERVATION
IN PROTECTING SHARKS.

The Narrator says IT'S ESTIMATED THAT
A SINGLE LIVE SHARK IS WORTH
AS MUCH AS 200,000 DOLLARS IN TOURISM
REVENUE OVER ITS LIFETIME.
ITS ECOLOGICAL VALUE
IS INESTIMABLE.
STUDIES IN THE BAHAMAS
AND THE CARIBBEAN HAVE SHOWN
THAT WHERE SHARKS
ARE KEYSTONE SPECIES,
THEIR DEPLETION COULD ULTIMATELY
DESTROY CORAL REEFS.
THEIR ROLE IN THE
FOOD CHAIN IS CRUCIAL.
IF THE SHARKS ARE GONE,
SO TOO GOES A RICH ECOSYSTEM,
ONE THAT FEEDS LOCAL PEOPLE
AND KEEPS VISITORS COMING BACK.

A hammerhead sharks gently swims.

Stuart says I'VE BEEN BLESSED
TO GROW UP WITH ALL THIS
HEALTHY MARINE ENVIRONMENT
HERE IN THE BAHAMAS.
LOTS OF SHARKS.
THE OCEANIC WHITE TIPS,
HAMMERHEADS, REEF SHARKS,
TIGER SHARKS.
AND I HOPE THAT THEY'RE HERE
FOR MY GRANDCHILDREN,
MY GREAT GRANDCHILDREN, FOR
MANY GENERATIONS BEYOND THAT,
THAT THEY CAN ENJOY
THIS WONDERFUL RESOURCE.

Eric says AND I AM VERY OPTIMISTIC
THAT MANY OF THESE SPECIES THAT
ARE NOW THREATENED ARE GOING
TO BE ABLE TO BOUNCE BACK AND
THAT HUMAN BEINGS ARE GOING TO
UNDERSTAND HOW IMPORTANT IT IS
TO LIVE IN BALANCE WITH THESE
VERY IMPORTANT CREATURES
THAT INHABIT OUR WATERS.

Music plays as the end credits roll.

Narration, Robert Henderson.

Produced by Erin Skillen and Hilary Pryor.

Copyright 2013, May Street Productions.

Produced in association with Discovery World.

Watch: Ep. 3 - Shark Nation