Aussie woman captures ‘most magical’ encounter with world’s largest shark

A Queensland couple have captured a rare and "super special" sight while fishing off an Australian island — an experience they'll never forget.

Taking the trip to South Stradbroke Island one morning, Jasmine Porra and Travis Lowe were sailing to a fishing mark when they spotted the whale shark — the world's largest shark — swimming by.

Despite making sure to keep their distance, it was the "curious" creature that decided to make its way over to them, giving the couple a "really cool" bonding experience.

Two photos of the whale shark spotted at South Stradbroke Island in Queensland.
A whale shark made its way to a couple fishing from a boat at South Stradbroke Island in Queensland. Source: TikTok/yasihq

"It spent around 20 to 25 minutes with us," Mr Lowe told Yahoo News Australia. "I turned the engine off and we just sat there and let it do its thing."

The footage from May 28 was posted to social media this week and shows the whale shark swimming up to the boat and circling it, showing off its beautiful spots while Ms Porra is heard laughing with delight. "We were in shock... it's super rare," the Gold Coast artist said.

Mr Lowe, who has been sailing since he was nine, said he had "never come across anything like this", and considered it to be a very lucky experience. "Honestly it won’t happen again, I can guarantee that," he said.

Social media users react to video of whale shark

Since being uploaded yesterday, Ms Porra’s TikTok video of the special encounter has been viewed more than 38,000 times, with many sharing the couples delight.

"Absolutely incredible," one person commented.

"I would have cried, so beautiful," another said.

"That is extremely rare," a third person said.

Jasmine Porra and Travis Lowe smile while in a car.
Jasmine Porra and Travis Lowe said the experience was a once in a lifetime event. Source: Supplied

Whale sharks are an endangered species

The whale shark can grow up to 12 metres long and is known to be a docile creature that is not dangerous to humans.

In Australia, the species is predominately found off the coasts of northern WA, the NT and Queensland, with some scattered localities in NSW and Victoria, according to the Australian Museum. Whale shark numbers are dwindling however, in part due to accidentally being caught by fishing vessels, and the species is now considered vulnerable.

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