Gigantic 15ft-long shark spotted swimming off coast of British beauty spot

A huge basking shark has been spotted off the British coast for the first time this year, incredible footage shows.

The giant creature – thought to be more than 15ft long – was seen swimming just below the water in a Cornish bay.

AK Wildlife Cruises guide Georgia Bardua was stunned to see the shark near Falmouth.

The magnificent beast is the second-largest living shark in the world, after the whale shark.

The humongous fish is spotted in the Scottish Hebrides fairly regularly, however sightings in Cornwall are much rarer.

The crew were testing out the boat last week prior to opening, and took it for a spin to Portloe bay.

Georgia was astonished to spot the basking shark cruising under the water.

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It was the first sighting in Cornwall – and appears to be the first in the UK this year.

“It was really exciting and very unexpected,” Georgia said.

“It was quite a big basking shark, and really nice to see and record.”

And this was the earliest AK Wildlife Cruises have ever seen a basking shark in Cornwall.

“There are only a handful of sightings around Cornwall every year,” Georgia said.

“We used to spot quite a few around July time. In the last few years they have been seen quite a lot earlier in the year.

“I think this is the earliest we have ever recorded one.”

Georgia says they believe it is due to sea temperatures increasing due to global warming.

“We recorded a sea surface temperature of 12.2C which is particularly warm for this time of year,” Georgia explained.

Not a huge amount is known about the magnificent aquatic beasts swimming off the Cornish coast.

It is unknown if they live in deep nearby or move down from the Hebrides in Scotland – where they are more common.

Georgia added: “No one really knows where they come from, or where they go, so there is a lot of research being carried out at the moment into that.”