Diver breaks silence on almost jumping into gaping jaws of monster 16ft shark

This is the horrifying moment a diver almost jumped directly into the gaping jaws of a 16ft shark.

Ocean Ramsey, a marine conservationist, has been swimming with the sharks in Hawaii for more than two decades but came within a few inches of severe injury – or death – last week.

The beast that lunged at her was Queen Nikki, a monster tiger shark that lurked hidden beneath the ocean surface just until Ramsey was about to enter.

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In shocking footage that has since gone viral, the diver can be seen lowering herself into the water before bobbing her head under the surface.

She then recoils quickly, poking her fins out to meet Queen Nikki's razor-sharp teeth as they shoot towards her.

Ramsey told NBC's TODAY: "I love that tiger shark. I grew up with that tiger shark, I think we were teenagers at the same time. And so I’ve known her for over 20 years."

Explaining what actually happened, she blamed herself for entering the water too quickly. That's what she reckons the beast "reacted to".

Ramsey continued: "I saw her and she was close enough, with enough speed, that it looked like she was actually going at maybe my fin tips.

"I could see her speed and I knew that I needed to back off in that moment."

The diver was apparently unfazed by the near-death experience, taking a few seconds to compose herself before jumping right into the ocean.

Ramsey enters those waters every day as part of her work in shark research and conservation.

She also takes daring people with her on occasion to educate them about shark behaviour.

The marine expert was also keen to insist people give sharks the respect they deserve.

"They are apex predators, but they’re not monsters. And that’s what I want to make sure it doesn’t come across," she said.

She went on to share more footage on Instagram of her swimming with the tiger shark after the incident, where it appears Queen Nikki does not actually want to eat her.

Ramsey wrote: "Sharks are not monsters, they are important apex predators who need to be protected from the wasteful and cruel practices of shark finning, shark fishing, and bycatch."

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