Shark attacks can be avoided by staying out of water at exact times of the day, expert warns – as maulings spike in US | The Sun

AS the US continues to see a spike in shark maulings and sightings this summer, a marine expert has shared how swimmers can avoid the likelihood of an attack.

Beaches across Long Island, New York, and Florida have witnessed at least 12 separate shark attacks this year, six in each state.

And near-daily shark sightings have forced park officials to halt swimming for several hours and closely monitor the waters for predators.

The latest attack came on Monday after a 33-year-old man was taken to the hospital after being bitten on his right foot by a shark in Daytona Beach, cops said.

Now, experts have shared tips on how swimmers can avoid likely shark attacks by simply avoiding the waters at a specific time of the day.

Marine ecologist Dr Neil Hammerschlag told The Independent that people should avoid swimming at times when a shark could mistake them for prey, such as at night or in murky waters.

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"t can be hard for a shark to tell the difference between your hand or a fish,” Hammerschlag said.

Hammerschlag also stressed swimmers should avoid areas where there is a lot of fish, such as where people are fishing.

"A fish that gets caught on a fishing line and is bleeding and struggling is a dinner bell to the shark. Many sharks seek out places where people fish in the hopes of catching an easy meal,” he warned.

The Shark Research & Conservation Program director also warned that people should avoid jumping into waters where a river mouth meets the ocean.

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Rivers can pour nutrients and sand into the ocean, creating poor visibility for swimmers, Hammerschlag said.

The marine ecologist also advised people to take off their jewelry before catching some waves, as the shininess can catch light and attract sharks due to the resemblance to a fish scale.


Meanwhile, OCEARCH founder Chris Fischer told The US Sun that beachgoers must change their swimming habits to avoid shark bites because the ocean is the liveliest it's been since the 1950s.

"Now we need to evolve. We need to change. We need to understand it's not the same ocean that it was in the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s, where it was mostly dead," Fischer said.

"We killed all the seals. We sucked up all the menhaden for pet food. We gill netted out all the strippers and redfish and cod and other things because, at the time, we thought that the ocean was so big that we couldn't affect it by taking from it harvesting.

"You could just walk in anywhere, and nothing happened because we've wiped everything out. What's happening now as humans is we're having to kind of change, and we're having to modify our behavior."

That's why there's been more than a half dozen shark sightings or shark bites off the coast of Long Island, which was unheard of before the pandemic.

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"We're in the middle of a slow, steady recovery of those populations, so it's just something you're gonna see now and again," Fischer said, "because there are more sharks, and there are people in the water, and there are poor interactions.

"This is not a mystery. This is not some sort of radical climate change situation. The ocean is returning to what it is supposed to be. It's just that none of us have been alive long enough to have seen that."

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