Edgewater surfer bitten by shark near south jetty
By MARK I. JOHNSON
NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- A 26-year-old Edgewater surfer became Volusia County's 18th shark bite victim of 2008 Wednesday morning.
Beach Patrol officials said Alexander Zgura told them he was sitting on his board in the surf near the jetty on the New Smyrna Beach side of Ponce de Leon Inlet just before 11 a.m. when a shark grabbed him by the lower left leg.
"He said it was about 6 feet long," Beach Patrol Officer Scott Wise said.
Wise said Zgura appeared to suffer two bites between the knee and ankle causing about 13 to 15 separate lacerations, which would likely require stitches. However, he declined transport to Bert Fish Medical Center, saying he would go by private vehicle.
The officer said there is currently a "large mullet run" near the inlet, which means plenty of baitfish in the area. That combined with somewhat murky water may have contributed to the encounter.
Zgura's bite comes less than a week after a similar encounter between a surfer and a shark several miles to the south of the inlet.
Jacob Shoup, 20, suffered a bite on the left foot while swimming south of the 27th Avenue beach approach Sunday afternoon. His injuries were also considered minor, Beach Patrol officials said.
These two bites put Volusia County on pace with "The Year of the Shark" in 2001 when there were a record 22 man versus shark encounters in local waters.
However, Capt. Scott Petersohn of the Beach Patrol said that is likely nothing more than a coincidence.
"Last year was exactly like 2001, but that didn't pan out to be a banner year," he firstname.lastname@example.org
Information on previous shark attacks available at www.news-journalonline.com/special/sharkattacks/http://www.news-journalonline.com/NewsJ ... 082808.htm