Advice | June 27, 2016 9:00 am

People Are Going Crazy Over This Massive Would-Be Shark Off the Carolina Coast

Sure, it might be a hoax — go ahead, hop in and prove it

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina: known for its beaches, golf courses and sharks of what look to be prehistoric proportions.

Last week, Facebook user Steve Triplett posted the above image with this caption: “My sister-in-law took this picture today at Hilton Head. That is a huge shark and it is close to the shore……and there were two of them! I’m done…”

We hear you, Steve. So do the 57k+ people who have since shared your post. Experts are apparently in a debate about the owner of this fin, but considering it all comes on the tail of a fight to catch a 2,500 pound female Great White in the same area a few months ago, our official stance is to keep a healthy skepticism of anyone saying this could be a manatee, dolphin or sting ray (and a healthy distance from the fin in question).

Other questions to consider:

  • Is there a Mariana-sized trench a few meters offshore there? How else could a shark proportional to that fin be splashing around so close to the shore?
  • Is the shark in cahoots with this massive gator just captured along the Georgia coast? Or this one?
  • Is it three smaller sharks zipped into a giant shark suit?
  • Is it a carefully deployed viral-marketing ploy from someone at Shark Week, which began yesterday?
  • Is it a misunderstood softie trying to catch its big break ahead of said Week?

Until we get the answers we need, be careful out there, folks.