Brave Turtle Evades Shark Attack — And Then Counter Attacks

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Drone footage that captured a brave turtle evading a shark attack was already impressive enough to hold viewers’ attention. However, the courageous creature then decided to launch a counter-attack, leaving everyone cheering for the underdog. It’s a must-see.

Jack Garnett, a professional drone operator, captured some incredible drone footage, featuring a heroic fight between a sea turtle and a tiger shark. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Jack Garnett, a professional drone operator, captured some incredible drone footage off the coast of a remote beach in Western Australia, according to Fox Weather. The video features a heroic fight between a sea turtle and a tiger shark near the Winderabandi coastline. While one might expect the turtle to become the shark’s easy prey, the courageous creature not only fended off the beast but also launched an unexpected counter-attack.

Of course, many wondered how even the most determined sea turtle could not only fend off a fierce tiger shark but also attack back, and they clicked the play button to find it out. What they saw was an amazing fight for survival, including an awesome counterstrike on the turtle’s part.

Apparently, sea turtles are less slow and more steady than one might assume. This is evident as we watch the clip recorded by Garnett and see the sea turtle rapidly swim through the water in repeated attempts to dodge the tiger shark’s jaws, quickly flipping over several times to evade the beast’s sharp teeth and giving it nothing but a mouth full of shell instead of the meaty meal it desired.

Eventually, the tiger shark gets its jaws around the sea turtle’s protective shell, but the loggerhead’s armor functions just as it should, preventing the shark from being able to fully latch onto its prey and take a bite. This, of course, is intentional and part of the turtle’s defense mechanisms, which allow it to survive against its few predators, including killer whales and large sharks.

“Their trademark hard shell helps defend their other more sensitive tissues from oncoming attacks. When protecting itself from predatory attacks, the sea turtle will strategically turn their shell in the direction of a shark’s mouth to prevent a bite of its flippers or softer parts and will rapidly swim in the opposite direction to avoid being caught,” Discovery explains. “This species’ built-in defense helps them protect themselves against one of the most prolific predators in the ocean.”

Jack Garnett
The turtle would flip, turning its shell to the shark to avoid its sharp teeth. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)
Time and again, the turtle avoided becoming a meal by giving the shark nothing but a mouth full of shell. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Jack Garnett explained that he and his family were on their final day of a caravan holiday in the area and had encountered the same turtle several times while camping, even giving the animal the name Mr. Turtle, NY Post reported.

“[My] three teenage kids, during their daily snorkeling and stand-up paddle boarding adventures, had visited what appeared to be the same large loggerhead turtle, and it was always a delight – the kids inventively naming it Mr. Turtle,” Garnett said. “On our last day at Winderabandi, the girls saw some unusual water splashes 50 meters off the shoreline, and the drone was sent out to investigate. I initially told the kids not to watch the drone video link as it appeared that a large 3-meter tiger shark was in the process of eating poor Mr. Turtle.” He continued, “Over the next 10 or so minutes, our family was truly amazed as we huddled around the screen, enraptured by a great battle between Mr. Turtle and the tiger shark.”

At one point, it does appear as though the shark is about to succeed in making a meal out of the turtle, but the brave little guy flips his shell toward the predator and manages to escape yet again. However, it gets even better. During the fight, which is reminiscent of David and Goliath, the turtle sees an opportunity to attack back, and she takes it.

The turtle sees an opportunity to launch a counterstrike. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)
Jack Garnett
The turtle counter-attacks, biting the shark’s tail and causing the beast to retreat. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

After evading multiple attacks, the loggerhead turtle bit the shark’s tail causing it to swim away, proving that sometimes the underdog wins even when it’s a timid turtle against an aggressive tiger shark. Garnett showed the impressive footage to marine biologists who recognized the “known behavior” and identified the turtle as a female loggerhead by “the shape of its tail.”

“They had never seen footage that captured it so clearly, and usually, the turtles don’t win,” Garnett said. “They said that turtles are colloquially called tiger sharks’ sea-biscuits’ as they are a favored meal of the apex predators,” he added. “A single mistake by Mr. Turtle would have meant a lost limb or fatal bite,” Garnett said. “[It was] an amazing outcome to see him swimming smoothly and at max power along the shore at the end.”

There’s actually a lot we can learn from the clip, and not just about turtles or sharks. Many would assume that the sea turtle would meet its demise, but its careful evasion shows how defensive tactics can be the difference between life and death. Simply put, sometimes the best offense is a good defense, as the old adage goes.