Monday, September 15, 2014

Shark Attack In Santa Cruz, Northern California Humboldt Bay sunday

A man was bitten by a shark while surfing off the Northern California coast Sunday morning near Humboldt Bay.
Shark Attack In Santa Cruz, California: Great White Breaches Water, Attacks Surfer
The victim was at a surf spot called Bunkers at the bay's north jetty when he was attacked and bitten on the upper left thigh.
He was able to paddle to shore and was alert and conscious when rescue crews got to the scene at 8:45 a.m., Samoa Peninsula Fire District Chief Dale Unea said.Other surfers had wrapped the wound and were keeping the man warm. He was taken to a hospital and is expected to fully recover.
A shark attack off of the shores of Santa Cruz County in northern California Saturday left a surfer frightened — but fortunately unharmed, as the Great White shark seemed more interested in his surfboard than in taking a bite out of a human being.
Surfer Beau Browning was riding the waves about 150 feet out to sea at Manresa State Beach shortly before 7 pm September 13, when what he described to local TV station KSBW as a 15-foot Great White shark leaped out of the water and landed squarely on his surfboard.
The shark was so heavy that the surfboard sustained serious cracks and Browning had to dispose of it.
“I caught my second wave, and barely got into it and out of nowhere, I was popped into the air by probably like 10-15 feet, and I looked down and saw a shark,” Browning told the TV station. “He took a bite on the way down.”
Browning said that he was more in danger of drowning than suffering a shark bite, because he remained tethered to the surfboard throughout the surprise shark attack. As a result, he said, when the shark swam away, Browning was dragged under the water for several seconds until the shark freed itself if the surfboard.
Though shaken up by the shark attack, Browning said that he does not bear any ill will toward the shark, or any shark.
“They were just doing what they’re designed to do,” the surfer said. “And they thought I was something else. And that’s all it is. I got no hard feelings against sharks.”
The reported shark attack was only the seventh in Santa Cruz County in the past 88 years. None of the shark attacks has resulted in a human fatality.
A Florida surfer in August was not as lucky as Browning, however. On August 29, 17-year-old Brendan Murphy was attacked by a small shark no more than four feet in length. But the shark gave him a leg wound that required 15 staples. Murphy is still recovering from the shark attack.
Most shark attacks in California have occurred further south than Santa Cruz and adjacent Monterey County. Scientists speculate that the plentiful population of seals and other pinniped animals in the area provides enough food for the local sharks, keeping them away from humans.

Know your sharks: Top 10 most dangerous sharks............................

Another surfer, Scott Stephens, survived a shark attack at Bunkers in October last year.
From Santa Cruz to Big Sur, Central Coast ocean-goers did not report any great white shark encounters this summer or fall other than a few sightings.
Eight "Shark Warning Water Advisory" signs were posted around Pleasure Point in Santa Cruz during a big swell in June. But the advisories claiming three great white shark attacks all happened in one day turned out to be fake, and someone was posing as a California State Park official to scare surfers out of the water at popular spots.
On Shark Research Committee's website, Californians who venture into the ocean describe and document recent shark encounters.
On Sept. 4, Barret ‘Bear' Pruden was kayak fishing between Pleasure Point and the Santa Cruz Harbor a half-mile from shore when a great white shark suddenly launched itself out of the ocean.
“I was fishing just south of the harbor at around 8:30 a.m. The (shark) came completely out of the water," Pruden wrote on the Shark Research Committee's website. "The sound that it made coming out of the water is probably what it sounds like when a submarine fires a nuclear missile and it rockets out of the water. It seemed to freeze in mid-air, getting its entire body out of the water before it does a belly flop that explodes the water around it. The shark was about 30 feet away from me when it jumped out of the water. It was a great white shark that had to have been between 12 – 15 feet long. It was twice as thick as my kayak, real fatty and a dark blue gray on top and the bottom was super bright white."
Up in Half Moon Bay, a close call happened when Wendi Zuccaro and a friend named Anne were surfing 150 yards from shore near the jetty at Pillar Point on Aug. 17.

"I noticed baby sharks about 18 – 32 inches long swimming around our legs, but they didn't seem interested in us, and I didn't want to scare her, so I didn't tell her until way after our session," Zuccaro wrote. "That was about 11 a.m. We caught a few small waves but it was pretty flat at 12:40 p.m. We were both lying flat on our boards with no limbs hanging off and we were just talking and waiting for a wave. All of a sudden, something hit the bottom of my board two feet from the fins and tossed me and the board into the air about 2-3 feet. I held onto the board and recovered. Anne asked what happened. Since she doesn't know much about sharks, and has a fear of them, I said it was probably a seal or sea lion even though I knew it wasn't. At 1 p.m., Anne said, ‘Look, I think there's a whale right behind us close to the surface you can see its shadow.' What I saw was a White Shark with its dorsal barely under the water surface. It passed right behind us just under a foot away. It never slowed, stopped or even circled. It was just cruising by. I told Anne that maybe we should go in and check out the conditions from the beach. Since she was getting cold, she agreed. I checked the bottom of my board after and saw the bite marks on it."
Local shark experts say October is when the most white shark are cruising along the Central and Northern California shoreline.

The two most recent fatal shark attacks along the Pacific Coast of North America both happened at Surf Beach in California near Vandenberg Air Force Base during the month of October. A surfer was killed by a shark at Surf Beach in October 2012 and a boogie boarder was also killed there in October 2010.

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