By Ellie Duncombe and Joe McFarlane
A cameraman captured more of a close-up shot than he was expecting after almost being swallowed whole by a hungry humpback whale at dinner time.
Cameraman and deep-sea diver Peter Schneider, 58, headed from his home in Berlin, Germany, to the cold waters off Skjervoy, Norway, in order to capture some whale footage.
Documenting the hunting and feeding behaviour of Orca whales, Peter almost became lunch as one random Humpback whale crashed the party and almost swallowed Peter whole as they fed on the plentiful supply of herrings.
Swimming, opened-mouthed, trying to collect as many bait balls of herring as they could gobble up, Peter was inches away from the mammoth gaping mouth of the hungry whale as it swam by.
Luckily for Peter, the 13-14 metre long giant swam by, leaving the diver with an incredibly intense moment caught on camera.
Peter said: “The water was quite dark, so you cannot see very far. Often you see only black water or a carpet of silvery herrings.
“Behind all the herrings a humpback whale came straight towards me with it’s mouth wide open.
“For a moment, time stood still and I thought the whale 100% shared my surprise. The whale slightly changed it’s ballistic curve just to avoid getting me.
“I had the impression that the whale and I connected in some way. I immediately felt grateful for the intimate experience. Wildlife observation is an exciting, fulfilling and life changing experience.
“In ‘our world’ we try to control everything and we have insurance for everything. But being out there in nature you have very, very limited control over the environment. You can be prepared, very well prepared, but you can never control nature. This gives you a feeling of being alive. You start to respect the power of nature and also learn to respect your own limits. You have to let go and go with the flow of life.”