Shark Photobombs Surfing Contest
'Nobody was rattled,' competition resumed
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 2, 2014 8:21 AM CST
Updated Dec 7, 2014 9:36 AM CST
In this photo taken with a smartphone on Sunday, Nov. 30, 2014, a shark, center, jumps out of the water near where several surfers are paddling at Coffs Harbour, Australia.   (Steph Bellamy)

(Newser) – A jumping shark has photobombed a surfing competition off an Australian beach. Amateur photographer Steph Bellamy captured the image of the shark with her smartphone last Sunday as she was photographing mothers and their children paddling on their surfboards off a beach in the New South Wales state town of Coffs Harbour. Bellamy, 47, said Tuesday that she did not know that the splash in her viewfinder was a shark until she examined the image on her phone moments later. "He jumped twice, he photobombed big time, then he went on his way," Bellamy said.

The mothers, like Bellamy, had children in the Coffs Harbour Boardriders club and were taking part in a special mothers' heat toward the end of day of a local surfing competition when the shark appeared a few yards away from the group. She photographed the second breach. Bellamy quickly showed the image to organizers, proving that the split-second disturbance had not been caused by a dolphin or tuna. The surfers were called out of the water. But about 15 minutes later, most returned and the competition continued, she said. A shark expert confirmed that the image was a shark, and estimated it was around 7 feet long. One surfer said he mistook it for a tuna. "It was having a bit of fun," he said. "It just jumped up and had a spin, then jumped up and had another spin, then went away." (The Huffington Post has a gallery of humorous and somewhat risque photobombs.)