Kaia Anderson, 14, was bitten on the foot by a spinner shark while surfing with friends at Floridana Beach, Florida, United States.
The incident occurred an hour or two before sunset on 18 November 2017.
“I felt a tug on my leg,” she said and shouted to her friends that she been bitten. They turned and caught a wave to the beach.
A witness said when she got to shore she couldn’t stand up. A nearby fisherman carried her to a the beach access. A friend of Kaia who had been watching the surf, wrapped his shirt around her ankle. They called an ambulance and she was taken to Sebastian River Medical Center.
She needed 100 stitches to mend the shark bite wound, including 3 tendons that were damaged.
Kaia’s father said the shark was likely swimming toward food, but clamped onto Kaia’s heel instead. He said after the shark bit Kaia it immediately let go.
Carlos Iribam, a part-time lifeguard for beaches in Lantana and Boynton beaches, suffered minor lacerations when he was bitten on the right foot by a 4-5 foot spinner shark, 20 feet from the shore at Lantana Municipal Beach, Florida, US.
The incident happened on 18 October 2017.
“I was out there swimming and then I got stung by a jellyfish, I was like ‘Ahhh, I think I should go back in,'” he said. “Next thing you know, I felt a crushing pain on my foot.”
He came to shore himself and received assistance from his fellow lifeguards.
“I like to stay calm in these situations. I didn’t want anybody on the beach to freak out,” he said.
“If you don’t mess with them, they won’t mess with you. I felt like when he bit me, he nipped me and pulled. It just felt like a crushing pain and he just let go because he knew it wasn’t a mullet,” he said.
An unidentified surfer suffered a minor bite on his foot while surfing at Ponce Inlet, Volusia County, Florida on Saturday 10 June 2017. He “got off his surfboard and stepped on the sand bar just north of the jetty when a shark nipped him on the left foot just before 10am,” said Volusia County Beach Safety Ocean Rescue Senior Capt. Tamra Marris.
“He had a laceration,” Marris said. “It didn’t appear to be significant.”
He was taken to the hospital for treatment.
Marris said the migration of mullet and other baitfish make for plentiful feeding grounds for common blacktip and spinner sharks, which grow to 6- to 8-feet long.
This was the 6th shark attack in Volusia County this year.
The Daytona Beach News Journal recounts them: Among the six shark bites this year was 58-year-old man, who was bitten on the foot while surfing in New Smyrna Beach in March. April saw four shark bites, including a 16-year-old swimmer in Daytona Beach, a Georgia woman bitten on the thigh in New Smyrna Beach, a 35-year-old woman bitten on the leg in Ormond Beach, and an unidentified person who suffered a minor bite on the foot in Daytona Beach Shores.