Watch: Close encounter between fishermen and three large WHALE SHARKS

·1-min read

This footage shows the encounter between fishermen and three large whale sharks - that nudged their boat as they searched for a snack.

The sharks were spotted basking and eating plankton on the surface of the water just off Anna Maria Island, Florida, when they came across the fishing boat last week [May 12].

The video clip shows the huge sharks gracefully rubbing against the side of the ship as it crossed their path in the ocean on Wednesday afternoon.

Fishing guide and boat captain David White, 39, was thrilled that he and his fishing team were lucky enough to encounter the largest fish in the world.

David, from Bradenton, said: "We kept our distance as not to disturb the animals, but one swam directly over to the vessel and was feeding right in front of us.

"I see whale sharks about once a year, if I'm lucky.

"My first thought was about the large Cobia that sometimes follow the large sharks - Cobia are a big fish and extremely good to eat.

"Common misconceptions with these particular sharks is that they are dangerous, when actually, they eat plankton, krill, and fish eggs. Totally harmless animals. 

"Hopefully this video will show how peaceful, majestic, and harmless these beautiful creatures are."