A viral video which was shared on Business Insider UK on Wednesday afternoon showed a freediver being surrounded by huge tuna fish in Maltese waters.
The video got more than 200,000 views and 200 shares in the first 24 hours, and features popular Spanish diver Miguel Lozano, who currently holds the record for the world’s second deepest freedive. The short clip is absolutely breathtaking, as you’d expect from footage taken by two men surrounded by a pillar of huge tunas.
The story behind the video, however, might be a little fishy.
According to the Business Insider UK video, “Miguel Lozano found himself among a school of fish, hundreds and hundreds of tuna. He came across the fish while freediving in Malta.”
Once the video made it to Maltese circles, though, most people pointed out that the whole thing looks an awful lot like a fish farm. “I used to live and work in Malta. Where he ‘came across’ them tunas is a tuna form, inside a net,” one person commented. “The edge of the net is clearly visible!” another commented.
“Yeah, like any diver would if they illegally swam into one of the many tuna farms around Malta,” one person added.
Lovin Malta reached out to the Fisheries Control Room to get some more information on any potential legal ramifications of diving in Malta’s tuna farms.
“I’ve never heard of anything similar happening in my five years of working here,” a representative told Lovin Malta. “There are some boat tours which are organised towards the end of summer and around October where tourists are shown the process of fish farming. They’re allowed to get pretty close to them, but we’ve never heard of them actually diving in.”
The Fisheries Control Room went on to explain how this is not only highly irregular, but also potentially dangerous. “Tuna are big fish, and people need to dive with trained professionals even when we’re talking about a ‘domesticated’ dolphin in a water park, let alone jumping in the middle of hundreds of tuna.”
All things considered, however, it doesn’t seem like there are any specific laws laid down about swimming or diving in tuna farms.