Reef Hooks, How to Use Them Properly?
Underwater thrusters - underwater scooters
Underwater Thrusters or How to Move Faster While Diving
Show all

Shark Diving: The Answers To All Your Questions

We are shark advocates and big fans of diving. Therefore, we couldn’t ignore shark diving in this blog.

We know that some people shiver at the mere mention of diving with sharks. The reason is that these animals have received the harshest of defamation campaigns: fear.

This post aims to relieve that irrational fear that has been instilled in our heads. We are going to talk about the real stars of shark diving. These are:

Knowledge. A knowledge that allows us to approach such magnificent and impressive animals.

Adventure. You will never feel such a striking sensation of adrenaline and ecstasy as you do when diving with sharks.

Beauty. They say that beauty is capable of evoking emotions and feelings.

We assure you that neither shark diving nor this article will leave you indifferent, so keep reading!

1. What Is Shark Diving?

The term shark diving gathers all those dives that are carried out with the conscious intention of seeing sharks, therefore they take place in specific spots where these animals can be found. Depending on the type of shark that is expected to be found, different diving methodologies are used.

At Dressel Divers, we offer various shark diving experiences, from cage diving with white sharks to sporadic encounters during regular dives. We basically explain what each one consists of.

  • Bull Shark Dives

Bull shark diving follows a different procedure. It involves scuba diving with simple precautions such as never losing visual contact, staying in a group, moving horizontally, and never abruptly.

Additionally, bull shark dives are only conducted by highly qualified professionals who are knowledgeable about the behavior of these animals and will inform you that touching or feeding the animals is prohibited.

This method of diving is also valid for encounters with other shark species such as tiger sharks, hammerhead sharks, or the oceanic white tip shark.

  • Whale Shark Watching

In Mexico, whale shark diving is not performed, snorkeling is done instead. This is because during the summer months, these sharks swim near the surface in search of their preferred food, plankton. To learn more about whale shark diving in Mexico, follow the link.

  • Scuba Dive with Nurse Sharks, Angel Sharks or Other Sharks

Diving in the Caribbean Sea offers many opportunities for encounters with sharks such as nurse sharks or angel sharks among others. These encounters do not require any special procedure, beyond enjoying the opportunity to see the sharks in their natural habitat.

There are other ways to dive with sharks although we don’t do them at Dressel Divers, for instance: cage shark diving

  • Cage Shark Diving

Cage shark diving is used for diving with white sharks. The diving experience involves being inside a protective cage, which is designed to keep the sharks from coming into direct contact with the divers.

This type of shark dives serves multiple purposes, including scientific observation, underwater filming, and as a tourist attraction.


2. Is Shark Diving Safe?

As passionate scuba divers and ocean enthusiasts, we often hear people express fear about diving with sharks. But the truth is when we take proper precautions and act sensibly, there’s no need to worry. After all, we’re not exactly the most appetizing prey to these magnificent creatures. So, let’s not forget that being rational is key when it comes to diving with sharks, and let’s embrace this amazing experience with confidence and open-mindedness. Yes, definitely we can say that diving with sharks is far from a dangerous activity.

shark diving (5) buceo con tiburones

3. Where Can I Go Shark Diving?

With Dressel Divers, you can dive with sharks in Mexico.

Looking for a thrilling underwater experience? Our bull shark diving excursion takes place in Playa del Carmen. Take a plunge into the crystal-clear waters and get up close and personal with these magnificent creatures.

Join us for a snorkeling adventure with the gentle whale sharks in Isla Mujeres and Holbox. These massive creatures are sure to leave you in awe as they glide through the water, and you can get in on the action.

On the other hand, our Liveaboard offers allow you to dive with the best of the best, with top shark sightings at the most sought-after locations.

  • Best Places for Shark Diving

Let’s start with the amazing Socorro Island, right in Mexico’s backyard. These two popular shark diving spots are home to a variety of pelagic marine life, including hammerhead sharks, silk sharks, silvertip sharks, and much more.

Next up, we have French Polynesia. This breathtaking destination offers a shark diving experience like no other. From silvertip, lemon, black, grey, reef, whitetip, and hammerhead sharks, you’ll be surrounded by a diverse range of shark species. Check out the famous “shark wall” in Fakarava or witness hundreds of reef sharks in Rangiroa.

Now, let’s take a trip to the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador. Known for their unique marine life, these islands are a must-visit for shark enthusiasts. The warmer waters around Wolf and Darwin Islands attract schools of hammerhead sharks, giving you the chance to dive with these magnificent creatures like nowhere else in the world.

Finally, we have the awe-inspiring shark diving experience in the Bahamas. With great white, tiger, hammerhead, and white-tip sharks, you’ll be amazed by the incredible variety of shark species in these crystal-clear waters.


4. How Deep Do You Go When Shark Diving?

This depends on the type of shark you are going to dive with, the type of diving you are going to do, and the time of year when you dive.

For example, you can swim with whale sharks on the surface. The same goes for the white shark cage that is not fully submerged. However, if you want to dive with bull sharks in Playa del Carmen or any other type of shark in open water, you will have to go deeper than 12 meters.


5. Can I Touch the Sharks While Shark Diving?

Many divers are eager to touch these magnificent creatures, but this is not something we recommend. When we dive with sharks, we have a responsibility to act with caution and avoid taking any unnecessary risks.

Contrary to popular belief, sharks are not inherently dangerous. In fact, any potential issues that arise while diving with them are usually due to diver carelessness. That’s why it’s crucial that we do not touch sharks while in the water. Physical contact can startle the shark and cause it to change its behavior.

This not only keeps us safe, but it also helps to dispel harmful misperceptions about these magnificent creatures. By diving with caution and respect, we can ensure that future generations

shark diving 11) buceo con tiburones

6. Is Feeding the Sharks Allowed During Shark Diving?

Yes, it is allowed, at least in Mexico, but not all operators agree with these practices, much less Dressel Divers.

But let’s first explain the different shark baiting practices.

“Chumming”. This involves spreading small pieces of food and blood into the water to attract sharks to a specific area, which sometimes extends for miles.

Supplying sustenance by way of different techniques to sharks either directly or indirectly is “feeding”

The first one is used in white shark cage diving mainly, and the second one is with other sharks, such as tiger, limon, or bull sharks.

Although this may be a way to get closer to sharks, generally shy animals, for observation, they are also open to criticism.

Some voices in the community argue that baiting sharks can be dangerous as it can lead to sharks associating humans with food and becoming more aggressive toward them.

At Dressel Divers, we believe that a responsible approach to diving with sharks is the best way. Instead of baiting, we track and follow groups of sharks we know are in the area. This is the procedure we follow for our Bull Shark Dive and Whale Shark Snorkel Excursion. This practice is more responsible.

At Dressel Divers, we strongly believe that diving with sharks is an opportunity to raise awareness and support conservation efforts. However, we understand that the objective does not justify the means. We contribute to respectful, responsible diving with sharks and with the best practices.


7. What Should I Do If I Encounter a Shark While Diving?

Time to learn how to handle sharks face-to-face! First things first, take a deep breath and repeat after me: “Don’t panic, don’t panic, don’t panic.”

Sharks are very sensitive creatures and can sense changes in your body chemistry and hear vibrations. So, if you start to panic, your heart will race, your temperature will rise and you’ll produce more adrenaline, which could attract the shark. Just keep still close to the sea bottom in a horizontal position.

Remember, just because a shark disappears from sight, doesn’t mean it’s gone! These creatures can pop up quickly, especially tiger sharks.

When you see a shark, don’t stay on the surface or in the water column. Swim directly to the sandy bottom or reef. When your dive is complete, get out of the water as quickly as diving procedures allow.

Don’t follow a shark, give them plenty of space. Pursuing them from behind could cause them to turn and see you as a threat.

Always follow local guidelines for diving with sharks.

Remember, we’re guests in the ocean and should treat all sea life with respect. Don’t stare down a shark or flash a camera in its face move slowly and stay close to the reef or sea bed.

Stay safe and have fun on your next shark dive!

shark diving (7) buceo con tiburones

8. Is There a Minimum Age Requirement for Shark Diving?

Snorkeling with whale sharks has no age restriction. However, diving with bull sharks in Playa del Carmen does. Only children over 12 years old and certified as Open Water Divers or similar can dive with bull sharks.

Regarding cage diving with white sharks there is no age restriction, although it is not recommended for children under the age of 10.


9. Can I Take Photos While Shark Diving?

Of course, you can.

If you’re looking to snap some stunning shark shots, here are some tips to help you get the best pics.

When diving with unabated sharks, it’s best to bring a longer lens, like a midrange zoom, and make sure your lighting is set up correctly.

Remember different types of shots require a different setup.

When shark diving gets action-packed, it’s important to stay focused on the sharks and keep your eyes on them, rather than looking at the viewfinder or screen. This is actually easier than you think, especially when you’re using a wide-angle lens and the shark is a big one. A trick is pointing for the pectoral fin. This balances the shark evenly in the frame.

We cannot forget that the real challenge of these dives is not to capture the chaos, but to make strong, clean images.


10. Are There Any Restrictions on Shark Diving?

To dive with bull sharks in Playa del Carmen, there are only 3 prerequisites besides age.

These are:

  • be certified as an Open Water Diver,
  • have 20 dives or more in your log,
  • do a regular pre-shark dive.

Do you want to enjoy diving with bull sharks or any type of shark? Contact us.