A shark bites an angler while spearfishing off the Florida coast last week, it was reported on Sunday, May 21. An unknown shark species attacked the fisherman on his foot, where he sustained deep cuts and lacerations.
However, the Florida man survived the vicious shark attack and was transported to a nearby hospital for treatment. The incident occurred during the evening hours of Friday, May 19.
The said Florida shark attack was the second in a week, wherein a separate encounter involving 20-year-old Kevin Blanco was attacked by a bull shark while also spearfishing. He was taken to Jackson Memorial South following the shark attack.
Meanwhile, earlier in May, another related incident involved a 13-year-old girl Ella Reach who sustained bites on her arm, knee, finger, and stomach from a bull shark attack.
The United States is leading in terms of the number of shark attacks for each country worldwide. The U.S. record shows Florida to have the highest number of shark encounters, including fatal and non-fatal attacks. Aside from bull sharks, other shark species like great white sharks and bull sharks lurk in Florida waters.
In recent years, previous incidents have indicated the increasing proximity of predatory sharks in heavy-populated areas. In 2022, climate scientists linked climate change-induced ocean warming to responsible for the phenomenon, explaining intense heat drives fish and other prey of sharks to move closer to shore. These forces sharks to follow their food as well.
Florida Shark Bite Incident
(Photo : Photo by JOSEPH PREZIOSO/AFP via Getty Images)
A Great White Shark swims approximately 50 meters off the coast of the Cape Cod National Sea Shore in Cape Cod, Massachusetts on July 15, 2022. – The coast of Massachusetts is home to many White Sharks during the summer months. With interest in sharks growing, a shark related tourism industry has sprung up in places like Chatham, including sightseeing tours.
In a Facebook post by the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO), last week’s incident involved a 35-year-old man who was fishing off a dock on Flagship Drive in Summerland Key, Florida, at approximately 8:00 p.m. local time on Friday.
In the post, the MCSO – Florida Keys Facebook page said the shark went out of the water and landed on the dock when it bit the Florida fisherman. The current condition of the man was not disclosed as of Saturday, May 20.
Also Read: Controversial Shark-Hunting Tournament in Florida Rewards Hunters With Largest Caught Shark
Florida Shark Attacks
In 2022, Florida incurred a total of 16 shark attacks followed by 8 in New York, 5 in Hawaii, 4 in California, 4 in South Carolina, 2 in North Carolina, 1 in Alabama, and 1 in Texas, according to Florida Museum’s International Shark Attack File.
Based on the museum’s 2022 shark attack report, the U.S. has a total of 41 attacks followed by 9 in Australia, 2 in Egypt, 2 in South Africa, 1 in New Zealand, and 1 in Thailand.
Shark bites in the Sunshine State are rare and typically not life-threatening, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), as cited by CNN.
The FWC emphasizes that it is “extremely unlikely” for a human to be bitten by a predatory shark in Florida waters. However, it says that such incidents still occur and provides some of the following tips to avoid or reduce shark bites:
- Stay in groups since sharks prefer a lone or solitary individual.
- Avoid swimming far from the shore.
- Refrain from going into the water during twilight hours when sharks are most active.
Related Article: Shark Attack in the Florida Keys Leaves 10-Year-Old Boy to Lose a Part of His Leg
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