moray eel attacks diver

An underwater photographer got the shock of his life when he was attacked while filming a pair of moray eels while diving at a coral reef in South Africa.

Bartosz Lukasik, an experienced diver and underwater photographer, was diving in Sodwana Bay when he spotted two moray eels swimming in the reef. Lukasik started to film the pair when one of them suddenly turned and gave chase for nearly 50 ft.

Watch the footage of the near-attack below.

Lukasik isn’t sure why the moray chased him, as morays typically aren’t aggressive toward divers. However, he thinks the eel might have been angry that he interrupted a mating ritual.

He says: ‘Throughout my years of underwater filming, I have filmed the same species of eel close-up many times and this has never happened before.

‘My guess is that because there were two of them in one place I might have interrupted their mating ritual or courtship which made one of them pretty angry.

‘These eels are usually completely harmless. I have filmed them from a very close distance many times, for example with cleaning shrimps cleaning the inside of their mouth, and I never had any issues whatsoever.

‘Thankfully nobody was injured in this situation. I swam away very quickly, the eel chased me for about 10 to 15 metres but in the end, everyone was fine.

It’s a good thing Lukasik wasn’t bitten. Moray eels have two sets of jaws, not unlike the monster in the Alien film franchise. Learn more below!

There are over 200 species of moray eels. The one which chased Lukasik appears to be a honeycomb moray eel, which makes the attack all the more surprising as they are among one of the gentler species of morays.

Nevertheless, Lukasik has learned his lesson.

‘I guess this situation with the eel taught me a lesson that wild ocean animals can be unpredictable and even when you think you know a lot about their behaviour, it can happen that you misread certain signs resulting in a situation such as this and you should always treat these animals with even more respect in the future.’

Source: Daily Mail

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