New Video Shows Great White Shark Eat Sea Lion in San Francisco

The exact moment a great white shark attacked a sea lion off Alcatraz in San Francisco Bay on October 10. televisionremote / YouTube

On Monday, October 12, we told you the tale of the first recorded great white shark attack in the San Francisco Bay, upon what appeared to be a sea lion. Now, a new video of the event has surfaced, which shows the very moment at which the great white ate the unsuspecting mammal, just off Alcatraz Island.

"This is highly unusual in the San Francisco Bay and is the first known witnessed predation [there]," says David McGuire, director of the San Francisco–based shark conservation group Shark Stewards and research associate at the California Academy of Sciences.

The video, taken by a security camera aboard a ship owned by the company Alcatraz Cruises, shows the shark snagging the sea lion and breaching the water. A pool of blood can be seen spreading out in the water, and the shark returns to the surface several times to eat remaining chunks of flesh.

There are no recorded shark-human incidents in the bay. McGuire says the risk of drowning while swimming in this area is one in 1,100, while dying from a shark attack is one in 3.75 million.

"Speaking from the perspective of a surfer and routine swimmer in open water, my risk is highest, but I don't feel it is dangerous and will be swimming from Alcatraz [tomorrow]" for fun, he says. "The shark in question is likely gone."

Several great white sharks tagged by researchers have been recorded entering waters of the bay in the last few years; five of the animals, for example, ventured into the bay in 2007 to 2008. But this is the first record of one attacking and feeding on a large marine mammal.

There are no modern records of a shark attack on a human in the bay. In May 1959, however, an 18-year-old named Albert Kogler Jr. died after being attacked by a shark while swimming off of San Francisco's Baker Beach, on the Pacific Ocean just on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge. There have been 13 fatal shark attacks reported in California over the past 60 years, according to the Shark Research Committee, a science group.