A great white shark that got stranded on a Cape Cod beach is swimming free thanks to beachgoers who kept it wet until rescuers arrived.

“What we did once it was completely beached is throw buckets of water, because we though that would sort of help keep it alive”, Isabel Hegland said.

The 2.1m long shark subsequently washed up on the beach, where it became stuck. However when Smith and Skomal began discussing cutting it up for science research, the shark began moving pretty quickly, according to the Journal.

While some might view the shark as having gotten its just desserts, one witness had an altogether more compassionate view of the situation. Greg Skomal, the state’s shark expert, tells WBZ the shark was breathing and they followed it a mile and a-half out to sea.

Crews in Chatham, Massachusetts, led beached shark back to the open ocean on Monday.

On Friday, two great white sharks were spotted off Chatham near the North Cut.

The shark was tagged by the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy.

The first great white shark of the season was tagged earlier this month off Chatham.