The AP reports, that a long distance swimmer suffered injuries as the result of a bite from a sub-adult white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) of off Los Angeles County’s Manhattan Beach yesterday morning. According to an NBCLA report, the shark had been hooked by a fisherman on Manhattan Beach Pier and had been on the line for about a half-hour when a group of swimmers intersected the hooked shark’s path.
Steve Robles of Lomita, CA was bitten in the chest area and also suffered injuries to his right hand. A paddle-boarder helped Robles to the shore where he was treated by paramedics and transported to a nearby hospital. Thankfully, Robles injuries were not life-threatening, and he is currently recovering at home.
The fisherman told NBCLA that he was fishing for bat rays when he hooked the shark. He said he didn’t realize it was a white shark until after it had been on the line for 15 minutes. California law dictates that the line must be cut if a white shark is hooked, but he said the shark was close to a surfer when he recognized the species, and he didn’t want it to attack the surfer.
It should be noted that a white shark of this size, which was estimated at 7′ (about 2m) in length, does not typically feed on marine mammals or large prey items.
Perth Now reports that a “catch and kill” order has been issued by the Department of Fisheries after an abalone diver was bitten by “what’s believed to be a great white shark” today.
Greg Pickering suffered serious injuries to his head, arms, chest and face and is currently being treated at Royal Perth Hospital. According to a WAtoday report, Pickering was in stable condition. Pickering survived a shark bite to the leg from a bronze whaler (Carcharhinus brachyurus), also known as a copper shark, in 2004.
Hooks and lines have been set near the site of the attack, according to Fisheries Director General Stuart Smith, who went on to say he would likley give the order to destroy a “sizable” white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) if one is caught in the area. According to the 7News Perth report above, the size of shark is unknown, but white sharks are known to frequent the area where the attack occurred.
It was unclear from reports and Fisheries statements if/how the shark responsible for the the attack would be identified.
DiscoveryNetworks YouTube channel recently added the first promo for its 2013 Shark Week. The over-the-top style ad features the fictitious “Snuffy the seal” as his return to the wild is being celebrated following his rescue and rehabilitation. Poor Snuffy doesn’t make it very far, though, as a breaching white shark snaps him out of the air before he ever makes it back to the sea.
It looks like Discovery is going with the tagline of “it’s a bad week to be a seal” for this year’s edition of the much celebrated week of shark-themed programming, but they go on to say that “it’s pretty awesome” for the rest of us. I guess the rest of us will just have to wait until August 4 to see for ourselves.
What do you think of Discovery’s latest promo for Shark Week 2013? Sound off in the comments below!
The first specific order to catch and kill a great white shark is making headlines in Western Australia. The order was made in response to multiple sightings of a white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) reported in the waters off of Dunsborough, WA over the past several days. The kill order is part of a new set of guidelines intended to reduce shark attacks in Western Australia. The policy introduced late last year, after a series of fatal shark attacks in 2011 and 2012. This is the first instance of an order to kill a specific shark (or sharks), since the guidelines were introduced.
WA Today reports that lines were initially set on Sunday with the intent of catching the great white shark (or sharks) seen in the Dunsborough area. A white shark was spotted as recently as yesterday afternoon in the area. According to the WA Today report, two tiger sharks (Galeocerdo cuvier) were caught as part of the effort. The tiger sharks, which measured 1.8m and 2m in length, were released according to Fisheries Department spokesperson Tony Cappelluti, who said the tiger sharks weren’t considered to be the “high hazard.” The lines were removed on Tuesday night, but Cappelutti went on to say that Fisheries Department officers would continue monitoring the area throughout the week to assess whether any further attempts to set lines will be made.
Great white sharks are a protected species in Australian waters.
A 4m great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) that was spotted near Leighton Beach, Western Australia forced the closure of a children’s surf life saving carnival on December 2, according to a 7 News video report. Despite a controversial government issued “kill order” for large sharks that pose an “imminent threat” to beach-goers, Western Australia Fisheries Department did not harm the shark, which left the area within an hour. A Fisheries Department representative told 7 News said that killing the shark was not necessary, because it was not a threat with everybody being out of the water. Additionally, the shark was being monitored by boats and helicopters, during the time in was in proximity to the beach.
The beach closure coincided with a Cottlesoe coroner’s official ruling in the death of a Perth man, who disappeared while swimming last year. Part of his swimsuit, which had bite marks consistent with a 3m white shark, were the only evidence recovered from the scene. The police ruled that a shark attack was the most likely cause of death.