Rare encounter: mating leopard sharks

This is what a romantic sharks dating place looks like...

This is what a romantic sharks dating place looks like…

During our dive safari through the Similan islands, Tachai island and Surin National Park we did not encounter sharks like white or black tips or grey reef sharks. Which is very sad and frightening at the same time and shows the influence of commercial fishing and the finning poachers. The dive guides told me, they noticed a significant decline in shark encounters in these waters.

But there is hope, as I could see these sharkies do their best to keep up their numbers! :-D

During a morning dive we stumbled over two leopard sharks deeply engaged in their foreplay.
The male shark had snapped the tail fin of his loved one – I am sure he did that as tender as he could!
She was rubbing her back lasvicously in the sand…
If that is a natural behaviour for inviting others for sexual intercourse, then this lovely nurse shark lady probably made some promiscuous offers to me…
Here is more information about the reproduction of leopard sharks.

Anyway I was quite happy to see these leopard sharks taking action themselves and not relying on humans as Panda bear’s do to prevent them from extiction.

So on the following images you can see what leopard shark like as foreplay.
In order to get really naughty they were probably heading for a more quiet place.

I feel a little bit guilty we have disturbed them during their important task to produce more little baby sharkies…
But I wish them all the luck they need and that their efforts will be rewarded by a lot of spotted and sharp toothed kiddies!

 

Mating Leopard sharks

Sharky love!

Mating Leopard sharks

Mating Leopard sharks

 

He did not let loose the tip of her fin.

He did not let loose the tip of her fin.

Compared to other species their flirtation looked quite peaceful, others look more like they would fight.

Compared to other species their flirtation looked quite peaceful, others look more like they would fight.

Mating Leopard sharks

Mating Leopard sharks

We tried to keep a maximum distance, in order to keep the disturbance due to our presence at a minimum level.

We tried to keep a maximum distance, in order to keep the disturbance due to our presence at a minimum level.

Mating Leopard sharks

As they went off, I was lucky and they passed about 5 m below me.

The male Leopard sharky was really clinging to his chosen darling.

The male Leopard sharky was really clinging to his chosen darling.

Have fun and good luck on your mission!

Have fun and good luck on your mission!

Here is the video footage, my dive buddy made. Get ready for some raunchy shark action!

If you are fascinated by these beautiful creatured, please check ou this short post about helping sharks in their struggle for survival!

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