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Diver is decapitated by huge 19ft Great White shark in front of horrified fishermen

A screaming woman was killed in a horrific attack by a great white shark this morning at Central Beach, Plettenberg Bay in South Africa.  Image: image file

A scuba diver is decapitated by a massive 19ft great white shark in front of horrified fishermen as it swims off a Mexican beach

  • Manuel Lopez was scuba diving in search of molluscs when he was attacked by a shark
  • Lopez, who is in his 50s, had his head ripped off in the horrific shark attack

A diver has been decapitated by a great white shark in front of a horrified fisherman off Mexico in the first deadly shark attack of the year.

Manuel Lopez was scuba diving for shellfish near San Jose Beach in Tobari Bay on Mexico’s west coast when the 19-foot-long shark attacked him on January 5.

Lopez, who was in his 50s, had his head blown off by the shark during the horrific attack.

“He was diving when the animal attacked him, ripping his head off and biting both shoulders,” fisherman Jose Bernal, who witnessed the attack, told Tracking Sharks.

Lopez had dived without an air tank to a depth of about 59 feet to pick up ax tripe, a scallop-like mollusk, from the ocean floor when the predator attacked it.

Bernal said sharks had been seen in the area in the days before the attack and the fishing crew were on high alert.

“Local divers had been warned of sharks in the area and most hadn’t been out for several days,” Bernal said.

Many fishermen had stayed ashore due to sightings of great white sharks.

But a shortage of seafood in the region created high demand and Lopez, with her economic future at stake, decided to dive in on what would be her last trip.

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Great white sharks can be up to 20 feet long and weigh up to 2 tons and have up to 300 razor sharp serrated teeth arranged in rows in its giant jaws.

Lopez, who was in his 50s, had his head blown off by the shark in the horrific attack

Lopez, who was in his 50s, had his head blown off by the shark in the horrific attack

The predator when attacking can swim up to 35 mph guided by an extremely strong sense of smell but normally feeds on seals, sea lions, dolphins and turtles.

Humans are often mistaken for seals, especially when wearing wetsuits and experts say the attacks are not intentional but “experimental” when they bite.

They usually back away after biting once when they realize the human is not their natural prey, but the damage from a single powerful bite is often fatal.

“Great white sharks are most prevalent in the Gulf of California during December and January, when pregnant female sharks enter the area,” Tracking Sharks said.

“Sharks often seek out fat-filled sea lions for food due to their high caloric intake.”

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Great white sharks: fearsome predators of the depths

  • Great white sharks have such a keen sense of smell they can detect a colony of seals two miles away
  • Great whites give birth to up to ten “cubs”, but mothers will eat them if they don’t swim fast enough
  • They swim up to 37 mph at full skin and burst out of the water under their prey
  • They attack 5-10 humans each year, but usually take a “bite sample” out of curiosity before swimming.
  • Great whites can live up to 70 years
  • They are colored white underneath to make them harder to see from below with the sunlight shining through
  • They have several rows of teeth which can number in the thousands
  • As their teeth fall out, they are replaced by razor sharp teeth in the row behind

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