A Florida fisherman was bitten by a shark while washing his hands off a boat in Everglades National Park.
According to a statement from an Everglades and Dry Tortugas official, the man reported the shark attack to National Park Service officials Friday morning, and the park ranger who treated the man said the injury was “similar to a shark bite.” was”. National Park. Officials say the attack is “extremely unusual” for Everglades National Park.
“The man said he was fishing from a boat in Florida Bay and was washing his hands in the water when he was bitten,” the statement said.
A video of the attack, confirmed by a national park official, shows the reported incident, a shark leaping out of the water to bite off a fisherman’s hand. It appears that the shark drags the man from the boat into the muddy water, after which other fishermen rush to pull the injured fisherman back into the boat.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue transported the man to a local hospital, where he was treated for his injuries. The fisherman who made the video declined to comment on the incident.
Alison Gantt, director of communications and public affairs for Everglades and Dry Tortugas National Park, said the shark in the video was likely a bull shark.
According to the University of Florida, the incident occurred in Florida Bay, a large shallow water lagoon in southern Florida, where the freshwater of the Everglades meets the salt water of the Gulf of Mexico.
“Although shark bites are extremely uncommon in Everglades National Park, we always advise visitors to exercise caution around the park’s wildlife,” the statement said.
According to the National Wildlife Federation, bull sharks can travel in both fresh and saltwater bodies. Other fishermen in Florida have reported similar interactions with aggressive bull sharks in the area.
Melissas, a charter boat captain and owner of Boca Grande Fishing Charters, told ABC News that bull sharks sometimes target fish caught by fishermen.
“When a fish is on the line, it gives a chance to a shark that would not normally be able to catch it and attack it, especially if the fish has been on the line for a long time; It can be tiring,” Melissa said.
He said that “a few times a year” during his fishing trips, sharks may eat the fish caught by fishermen before they are completely hooked. On other occasions, sharks will “hide under the boat” waiting for the fishermen to release their catch.
“It’s a really scary situation to have a fish as big as yours, 150 pounds or 175 pounds, have one or more bull sharks fighting over the boat and eating them,” Melissas said.