Third Shark Attack in Florida Waters in a Month Leaves Man in Critical Condition

Third Shark Attack in Florida Waters in a Month Leaves Man in Critical Condition

A man is recovering after being bitten by a shark near Fernandina Beach, marking the third shark attack in Florida waters within a month. Experts explain the increase in shark activity.

Florida, Bollywood Fever: A man on Florida’s northeast coast is recovering after being bitten by a shark this weekend, marking the third shark attack in state waters over the past month. The Nassau County Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit responded to a distress call Friday morning, finding the victim in critical condition aboard a boat. He was losing blood from a “severe” shark bite on his right forearm, according to a social media post from the sheriff’s office.

The incident occurred in the Amelia River near Fernandina Beach, about 35 miles north of Jacksonville. The victim had caught the shark while fishing, as explained by sheriff’s office public affairs officer Alicia Tarancon. Officers applied a tourniquet before taking the victim to shore, where he was airlifted to a local hospital. As of Sunday, Tarancon informed The Associated Press that the victim is alert and still recuperating at the hospital.

Third Shark Attack in Florida Waters in a Month Leaves Man in Critical Condition

This attack follows two other incidents in the Florida panhandle in early June, which left three people injured and led to temporary beach closures in Walton County. Additionally, three more shark attacks were reported in the U.S., including one in Southern California and two in Hawaii, one of which was fatal.

Stephen Kajiura, a Florida Atlantic University professor specializing in sharks, commented that the number of recent attacks is “a bit high” but can be attributed to more people in the water during summer and warmer conditions. “You’re going to have a higher probability of something happening because more people are coming to the beach,” he said. He also noted the presence of small bait fish near the shore, attracting sharks, and a resurgence of certain shark species, which might lead to increased shark activity.

Kajiura highlighted that shark activity peaks during warmer months and while sharks are seasonally migrating in fall and spring. Despite the recent spate of attacks, fatalities remain rare.

Florida leads the world in shark bites, with 16 unprovoked incidents reported last year, accounting for 44% of the 36 total unprovoked bites in the U.S. and just under a quarter worldwide, according to the Florida Museum of Natural History’s annual shark attack report.

Kajiura advised swimmers to remain vigilant rather than avoiding the water. He recommended avoiding flashy jewelry or watches, which may resemble fish scales, swimming in groups, staying near lifeguards, and steering clear of schools of fish where sharks may be present.

“You’ve probably been in the water with sharks before, and you didn’t know it,” he said. “Just be careful.”

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