A very special visitor has been making waves on the wild Atlantic Way in recent weeks.
A huge basking shark has been spotted in Achill Island’s Keem Bay almost every day for the past month.
Achill Tourism said there has been a big increase in people to making the trip to the Mayo island in recent weeks, as they try to catch a glimpse of the gentle giant.
Spokesperson Seán Molloy has filmed that shark swimming and feeding in the bay over the past month.
“He has been getting quite a good bit of attention – especially since the May Bank Holiday weekend,” he said.
“We had a whale and dolphin group organising a watch there and on that particular day, there were four basking sharks, two minke whales and up to 30 dolphins.
“So, since that day, a lot of people have gone back to the bay and on social media, almost every day, there are pictures of him going up.”
The bay was once the location of the largest Basking Shark fishery in the World – with over 9,000 sharks caught there-between 1950 and 1964.
Over the years, overfishing and a lack of understanding of the shark’s life cycle led to a critical reduction in their numbers worldwide.
In recent years however, Achill Tourism said the number of sightings has increased substantially.
Despite their huge size, the sharks are not aggressive and are harmless to divers and snorkelers.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature lists the basking shark as a vulnerable species.
Reporting from Teena Gates