Ben Fogle heads out on a shark hunt - using a whale carcass as bait

Ben Fogle.''Photo: Lauren Hurley/PA Wire
Ben Fogle.''Photo: Lauren Hurley/PA Wire
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TV ADVENTURER Ben Fogle has embarked on hunt to find a great white shark in British waters - using a whale carcass as bait.

The investigation is believed to be the first time whale-fall - where the process of a whale dropping to the bottom of the ocean once it dies - has been used in the UK.

Fogle is embarking on the experiment for an upcoming ITV documentary, and he has already tweeted a picture of a cloudy skyline from the expedition boat, writing “A perfect day for a shark expedition”.

The whale carcass, a female humpback weighing more than seven tons, will be dragged through the Celtic Deep, between Ireland and Wales, with cameras filming the response from marine life, including sharks.

The Shark Trust said its former chairman, Richard Peirce, had investigated over 100 sightings of great whites in Britain, describing a “handful of the sightings” as “credible”.

John Richardson, the charity’s conservation officer, said: “This is certainly an exciting project - possibly unprecedented in British waters - however the likelihood of encountering a white shark is incredibly low.”

He added: “Nevertheless a decomposing whale may prove impossible to ignore for a number of other magnificent oceanic sharks that are found in British waters, including the blue shark, porbeagle, shortfin mako, thresher - possibly even a Greenland shark.”

The whale was donated by the Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme, which was unable to save it when it was found entangled near Helmsdale, north east of Scotland, in June. It was frozen in liquid nitrogen, to preserve it ahead of the experiment.