Amanda Brewer – an art teacher from Whitman Elementary School in Turnersville, New Jersey, USA – took an amazing, terrifyingly close-up photograph of a female great white shark while she was cage-diving off the coast of Seal Island and it has snapped up a double-spread in the Guinness World Records 2016 book.
The shark enthusiast took the extraordinary shot on 22 August 2014 with a GoPro camera when she was volunteering with the charity White Shark Africa in Mossel Bay, South Africa and when she posted it on Twitter it quickly went viral.
The rare great white shark or the Carcharodon carcharias (Greek for "sharp-toothed") is the Largest predatory fish on Earth, with adult specimens averaging 14-15 ft (4.3-4.6 m) long and generally weighing 520-770 kg (1,150-1,700 lb).
There are many claims of huge specimens up to 10 m (33 ft) in length and, although few have been properly authenticated, there is plenty of circumstantial evidence to suggest that some great whites grow to more than 6 m (20 ft) in length.
Amanda wanted her photo to be linked to shark conservation and hopes that it will educate people about these fascinating creatures – one thought-provoking fact included in the book is that an estimated 100 million sharks are killed each year because of Asia's commercial trade for shark fins as a food delicacy.
On finding her name in the book, Amanda said: “I thought, Oh my goodness I read this book when I was a kid and here it is … Not only just my photo but my name.”
Amanda’s incredible snap introduces a whole section on astonishing record-breaking animals in Guinness World Records 2016: available in stores and online now.
2016 Guinness World Records Books