Picture of huge shark is fake

28 June 2022
What was claimed

A picture shows a giant shark leaping out of the water.

Our verdict

This picture has been digitally manipulated, and has been circulating online since 2016.

Hundreds of people have shared a picture of what appears to be a huge great white shark leaping out of the ocean. 

While many of the comments have praised the photo, apparently under the impression it had been taken by a photographer, it has been digitally manipulated. 

The picture has been written about many times before by other fact checkers. In 2016 a number of viral social media posts, including a tweet from the band Bastille, incorrectly described it as National Geographic's photograph of the year, taken by a man identified in some posts as Bob Burton. 

The claim was so widely shared that in 2016 National Geographic published an article debunking it, which said: “The man, who goes by the alias Bob Burton, claimed (falsely) to have taken National Geographic's photo of the year (an award we don't have) of a shark leaping out of the water (which is clearly fake).” 

The picture appears to have originally been posted online by a Russia-based illustrator, who has posted a number of other shark pictures to his Shutterstock, some of which are clearly identified as 3D illustrations

Image courtesy of Marcelo Cidrack

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