ANNA MARIA ISLAND, Fla. (WSVN) — A group of boaters got a pleasant surprise after three whale sharks swam up to them while they were sailing off the Florida coast.

Captain David White with Anna Maria Charters told Fox 13 his boat was stationary, about 30 miles off the coast of Anna Maria Island, when the aquatic creatures swam up for a visit.

White said the whale sharks lingered for a short time before taking off.

“I think he likes us,” some could be heard saying in a video of the encounter.

According to researchers at the University of Florida, whale sharks are the largest fish in the sea. Despite their size, they are considered harmless to humans.

Copyright 2021 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Join our Newsletter for the latest news right to your inbox