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Thanks Frank. In Northern CA where this was shot I have rarely ever seen more than 3 water photographers out at any one break and I have never had an issue. Generally speaking though, if there is an exclusive or pre-arranged shoot say between a particular photographer and surfer the other photographer should yield and not shoot their subject and also stay out of their frame.Kind of like the "uncle" at a professional wedding shoot. In other words ,no poaching. I knew the photographer in this shot and we were out there just having a freelance shoot. It really helps to chat it up with the local surfers, ask if it's OK to shoot them (some locals hate photographers and will actually threaten them for fear of exposing 'their" spot). This way they and you know what to expect in terms of how close you need to be depending on whether you are shooting wide angle(subject 2-8 feet away) or longer lens. In HI islands the crowds of water photographers are extreme . I've seen photos of 10 or more photographers in the wave with the surfer at Pipeline. VERY dangerous. There is a definite pecking order depending on skill, reputation, and length of time spent shooting there. If you show up a newbie and expect to just swim out and get in the key spot or position it would not be pretty. I surf as well so I know what to look for and avoid and it helps with building rapport with the guys you will be shooting.It is mainly the responsibility of the photographer to get out of the way when shooting. It really really helps to shoot highly skilled surfers for these wide angle shots. I have been very close to being run over and /or having a loose board hit me. I've never seen it happen. My greatest fear is the great white sharks. They are definitely up here. Once I'm in the water though ,I just relax and enjoy the beauty. I hope this helps. A sight called Surf Photographers United has many guys with many opinions and insights on this and other subjects related to surf and surf water photography.