The South West Film and Television Archive (SWFTA) is the regional film archive for the South West of England. Established in 1993, SWFTA's core collection comprises of the combined programme libraries of Westward Television and TSW (Television South West). The archive also cares for a significant number of donated film collections, both amateur and professional, dating back to the early 1900s.
This film is part of Free
Basking shark off Mousehole in Cornwall
Basking shark in shallow waters off Mousehole
From the collection of:
Just when you thought it safe to go back in the water, a basking shark is caught on film off the coast of Mousehole in Cornwall. The basking shark is one of three plankton-eating sharks and poses no threat to swimmers. The species is the second biggest fish after the whale shark and known for cruising along with its open mouth wide, filtering its food. They may appear in a group or school as in this film.
The basking shark follows the plankton migration and keeps to warmer waters and arrives at our temperate shores in the summer months. They are protected in some coastal waters because, at eight tonnes of fish with an enlarged liver, they are vulnerable to fishermen. The large liver retains oil and is prized in Chinese medicine and their fins are used for shark fin soup. A basking shark may grow to up to eight metres, give birth to one or two young but has no maternal instinct, once born, the young fend for themselves. The village of Mousehole is a small fishing port and lies within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).