A Volusia County, Florida, surfer is recovering after he was attacked by a shark, in an encounter that left him with 15 staples in his leg and a healthy appreciation for the ocean’s fiercest predators.
Seventeen-year-old Brendan Murphy, of Daytona Beach, was surfing near the north side of the Ponce Inlet North Jetty on August 29 when the attack occurred. Jumping off his board after finishing a wave, he immediately felt something unusual swimming around his legs, according to the Daytona Beach News-Journal .
“I was pulling my leash towards me to get my board and there was just like a shark thrashing at my feet and I just jumped back,” Murphy told WKMG .
The 3 to 4-foot-long shark bit into his right shin, before swimming away. Murphy only saw part of the shark during the attack, and thinks it may have been a spinner or blacktip. The attack left him wounded, and his surfboard damaged.
“Once I got out of the water, I looked at my foot and I just saw the blood rushing down it,” the teen added.
Capt. Tammy Marris of Volusia County Beach Safety Ocean Rescue noted that the incident marked the seventh shark bite reported this year. Although Murphy initially tried to brush off the attack, his father insisted they go to a hospital. When teen was treated, 15 staples were used to close his wound.
In late August, a 13-year-old girl in New Smyrna Beach was struck by a shark while bodysurfing in waist deep water. As The Inquisitr noted, the bite was just five inches across, indicating that the most likely culprit was a spinner shark, even though neither the girl nor her father observed the animal responsible.
Spinner Sharks grow to be only 10 feet long at maximum. Blacktip sharks, in contrast, grow to an average length of around 5 feet. Neither species is considered aggressive outside of the presence of food, and are not dangerous to humans. The International Shark Attack File lists no fatal attacks attributable to spinner sharks. While blacktip sharks are responsible for a larger number of attacks, only one has ever been fatal.
Murphy is now fully recovered, his staples removed on Thursday. The Florida teen plans to surf again, despite the shark attack.