A group of fishermen in New Jersey had a real life ‘Jaws’ moment this week when they caught a great white shark on film as it chomped down on bait beside their boat.

Scott and Jeff Crilly were out fishing on Monday with a group of friends off the coast of Manasquan, N.J., participating in a mako shark fishing tournament. They were getting ready to return to shore when their trail of bait attracted an unexpected guest.

“We just saw the shadow come up,” Scott Crilly said. “And we were like 'What is that,' and so we just stuck it out and it gave us a show."

In the video, the giant shark surges up out of the water to seize a bag of bait dangling off of the boat. The fishermen can be heard yelling in shock and excitement. By Wednesday, the video posted to Jeff Crilly’s Facebook had more than 382,000 views.

The friends were approximately 50 kilometres off the coast of Point Pleasant Inlet when it happened. Jeff Crilly said they first saw the shark around 4:30 p.m. “It just came in real slow and calm,” he said.

Great white sharks are protected, and not uncommon to the area, according to marine experts.

The shark may have deprived the team of some of their bait, but the Crillys were not fazed. They headed out for another round of mako shark fishing the next day.