What would have chomped on a creature like this?

What's worse than coming across a great white shark while you're diving for abalone?

How about coming across half a great white while you're diving for abalone?

That was the grisly scene waiting for Jay Haagmans, 39, while he was collecting the valuable shellfish off Flinders Island, 35km west of Elliston, on Saturday.

"It was pretty freaky," Mr Haagmans, who was one of the stars of reality TV program Abalone Wars, said.

 

Abalone diver Jay Haagmans.
Abalone diver Jay Haagmans.

 

"I saw something that I first thought was a big stingray. When I got closer I thought, 'That looks like a shark fin', and then I realised what it was."

Mr Haagmans said the shark was missing its entire tail and the rear part of its body from the anal fins back.

"It was clean cut, definitely a bite," he said.

"There was probably about 10 feet of shark left, and I reckon it would have been a 13 footer all up. Not the hugest shark, but not a small one either."

So what could have taken the back end off a great white? Well orcas - also known as killer whales - have been known to kill and even eat the giant sharks.

Mr Haagmans, however, believes it was most likely an even bigger great white that chomped the unlucky creature.

 

Abalone diver Jay Haagmans believes an even bigger great white that chomped on the unlucky creature.
Abalone diver Jay Haagmans believes an even bigger great white that chomped on the unlucky creature.

 

"Probably one of the big girls," he said.

"He might have been hassling her for a bit of … you know … and she just got a bit p … ed off."

While a mutilated great white would send most people scrambling back to the boat, Mr Haagmans didn't have that luxury.

Because he was diving at a depth of 25m, he had to spend a whole hour in shallower water to decompress to avoid getting the bends.

"I was just laying there, looking at my abalone, trying to take my mind off what might have done it," Mr Haagmans said.

The abalone diver said he'd never seen anything like it in his 20 years in the industry.

"I've seen plenty of live ones, but nothing like this," Mr Haagmans said.

"The worst bit is that this was the first day this year that I didn't have my GoPro with me!"

As for tomorrow?

"Yeah, I think we might dive somewhere else tomorrow," he said.


Anxiety for future drives Greens candidate

Anxiety for future drives Greens candidate

"I see that we have to do things ourselves, be the change.”

When to see the RAAF flypast: Every Queensland town listed

When to see the RAAF flypast: Every Queensland town listed

Find out where and when you can catch a RAAF flyover.

Regiment visit for school of fallen soldier

Regiment visit for school of fallen soldier

Annual visit honours life of Sapper Moerland