To encounter a Greenland shark (Somniosus microcephalus) is a lucky chance and a great opportunity to add to the little we know about this animal. Unless you are one of the few remaining Inuit or you dive in the more than cold waters of Canada, Greenland or Iceland, the chances of encountering one of these prehistoric looking animals are minimal. And if you do dive there and are curious to see one, you will have to descend to the abyssal depths between 1,200 and 2,000 meters where they spend most of their lives.
For this very reason, the difficulty of finding one, cameraman Adam Ravetch shows such satisfaction and excitement when he talks about his encounter with one of these sharks. In addition to its elusiveness, this shark has several characteristics that make it unique and special. For one, it is considered one of the longest-living vertebrates on the planet, capable of living more than 200 years. If you stay practically frozen (it lives in waters between 0ºC and 2ºC) and expend little energy (it can only reach a maximum speed of 1.6 miles per hour), you can afford to live longer. Another curious feature is that its meat is poisonous, with a high uric acid content... meat from which the Icelanders and Inuit have been making (and eating) a delicious dish called Hákarl for millennia.
Find below the video transcript of the interview with this cameraman who had such an unexpected encounter.
"The Greenland Shark is probably one of the most bizarre creatures on the planet. It is actually a deep-water shark and it is prehistoric.