A leopard shark being pet like a dog by an aquarium worker is making waves online. The video, apparently from New Caledonia’s Aquarium des Lagons, shows the shark swim up to a SCUBA diver who proceeds to gently flip it on its back and give the shark a belly rub. Films like Jaws have painted sharks as ferocious predictors in the public psyche, which is why this video is so popular.

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Some viewers claim that this video shows an example of tonic immobility, or thanatosis, when an animal takes on the appearance of being dead. This is a defense mechanism that can be artificially induced; in the case of sharks, turning them over can have this effect. While sometimes used as a form of mild anesthesia during experimentation, some scientists believe it can be a stressful experience for sharks, but it is difficult to determine if this is the case from this footage alone.

More info: aquarium.nc