A shark has been spotted swimming just off the coast of Chesil Beach.

A video captured the moment that the shark made an unusually close approach to the shore.

It has been identified as a basking shark, one of the largest species of fish in the world.

Marc Kativu-Smith, Coastal Centres Manager for the Dorset Wildlife Trust, said: "What an absolute treat to see a large shark like this so close to the shore in Dorset. Looking at the dorsal fin and the way the shark moves, this is most likely a basking shark. This is the second largest fish in the world, and although this one looks smaller, they can grow to 11m in length. There is no need to panic though as they are gentle giants and only feed on plankton.

"Basking sharks have been reported regularly in Dorset, and have even been filmed from Chesil Beach before, but it is rare they come this close to the shore.

"If you are ever lucky enough to encounter a basking shark while you are on a boat or in the water, make sure you keep your distance and always follow the basking shark code of conduct which you can find online. These magnificent giants are endangered in the North East Atlantic and it is important that they are not harassed or injured.

"Dorset Wildlife Trust is always interested in hearing about sightings of marine giants, so if you spot a seal, dolphin, shark or whale get in touch and let us know."

This video comes after two large sharks were recently caught off the coast of Portland.

The largest of the two sharks was 8ft long and weighed over 21 stones.

Andrew Selby, owner of Weymouth Angling Centre, said: "It is very unusual to have them in this close to the shore. That is why it was so surprising for the anglers. It does not happen very often, quite unique for our waters.

"We believe it was probably chasing bait fish and that it wasn't in distress. Our rising water temperatures are attracting far more sea creatures like sharks and different species of fish. Climate change yet again."

Visit dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk for more information about the sharks.