It's 5m long, weighs 2000kg - and it's hungry (+photos)

By Alanah Eriksen, Alanah May Eriksen

It is nature's most efficient killing machine, and stunning images captured by a wildlife photographer reveal the beauty and the horror of the great white shark in action.

South African wildlife photographer Chris Fellows took the pictures as the 5m, 2000kg predator exploded from the water to grab a lure.

The shark was travelling about 50km/h as its 250 teeth clamped on to the rubber bait.

"When kids see a shark eating a seal they feel sorry for the seal, but it's like a lion catching a zebra - it's a natural phenomenon," said Fellows.

He and his wife, Monique, have spent six months of each year for the past decade waiting off the coast of South Africa to capture pictures of the sharks as they hunt their food.

The dramatic series from which this picture was taken was photographed near Seal Island in False Bay, a beach near Cape Town.

The island is occupied by thousands of Cape fur seals, which sharks grab as they return to the island after feeding.

Although the images they capture are frightening, Chris and Monique Fellows are on the side of the great whites, and are trying to promote a positive view of them.

"To see a perfectly streamlined great white slowly cruising in clear water with shafts of light bouncing off its back is like watching a beautiful sports car effortlessly cruise past you on the freeway," says Chris Fellows.

"It is one of those moments that makes you appreciate a beautiful creation.

"We try to use our images in as positive a way as possible to show that the shark is more than an animal eating a piece of bait, but a perfectly designed hunter in complete control of its element."

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