Unfortunately no pics still cursing myself for not taking my gopro, so a little story.
Recently moved across to Fremantle from Melbourne and relatively new to spearfishing, without access to a boat have been exploring the local rock walls / marinas, getting a good feed of leatherjackets, bream, cuttlefish, octopus and one cray. We had been down to Deepdene, Margaret River area before and with the long weekend we had an opportunity for another go. Although the bay is protected by a series of offshore islands, there was still a mix of current and swell dropping the vis down to a dismal 9+m. You could see the bottom at around 7-8ms but not crystal clear.
The area is made up of some rocky outcrops and small islands, with limestone ledges rising up to almost the surface off a sand/weed bottom. My mate and I have a few unsuccessful cracks at the whiting in the shallows but make our way out towards the closest outcrops 150-200ms or so from shore, checking the ledges, swim throughs and caves as we go. Consistent with our experience thus far in WA, the area is really fishy, but the tasty target species are few and far between. It's all wrasse, scalyfin, crested and red lipped morwongs, buff bream, the odd small herring and bait fish.
After checking a ledge I returned to the surface to hear my mate "did you see the shark?" Nope, how big? "2ms or so, didn't look too interested". Damn am I going to be the only person who hasn't seen one here (my brother had seen one here on a previous occaison), so we continued on confident that we weren't of much interest to it and unlikely to see it again. After finding and repeatedly failing to nail some pike (I want to say short finned pike, but my fish id ability is dubious at best), we started to lazily curve back to shore, when crossing over a ledge I saw 3 decent size fish below me. A quick shallow dive and that distinctive stripe across the eye makes clear, dhufish!
I'd seen pictures and heard about their excellent eating. In my excitement I rush my shot and miss, they flee under a nearby ledge and my mate has a go. Nailing one, but not a great shot, straight through the fillet, he's holding it out of the water while trying to make his way to stand chest deep ontop of this ledge while I open up the catchbag and we attempt to silence and secure the fish. We double our catchbag as a float with a plastic bottle inside of it and 10ms of nylon line. As he's reloading, I'm spooling out the line, when a shape moves past us. You kill one fish and then you become the most popular person in the ocean. Our shark has returned, it's little school of attendant fish with it, our eyes are on stalks. It circles and then off out of view, reappearing again a few moments later. We only realise it's two sharks both around the 2m mark when they appear at the same time, one on our level and one swimming almost underneath us along the bottom. One comes within 3ms of us across the ledge we are floating above almost within jabbing distance. That's it we're out of here.
Without rushing we steadily move back towards the shore, one watching the front half the other the tail, the catchbag being pulled along on the end of the very loosely held 10m line. After we clear the first 30ms or so from where we got the fish we don't see them again, but it was a very nervy swim back to shore. We didn't even stop to take a potshot at a big trevally moving lazily across in front of us. After several washings of our wetties, we get back into the car and consult the book about what we'd seen. We're fairly certain the sharks were whalers of some kind, blunt rounded nose, relatively stocky looking, white eyes. But whether sandbar, bull, black/bronze whaler.. I couldn't say.
My first encounter with sharks survived, admittedly at low risk. Cooked up that dhufish in a light beer batter and it was the best fish I'd ever tasted. I wonder what would of happen'd if we'd surrendered the fish to them or why they didn't have a go at the catchbag or follow us?