Catlins shark attack

A body boarder was attacked by a shark at Porpoise Bay in the Catlins (near the southernmost point of the South Island) yesterday. Her leg injuries don’t seem too serious.

ODT: Shark attack response praised

A Frenchwoman in her 20s was left with a gash in her leg after a shark came “out of nowhere” while she was bodyboarding in the Catlins yesterday.

The woman was flown to Dunedin Hospital after she was bitten by the shark just after 2pm at Porpoise Bay, which is next to Curio Bay.

The attack left her with a moderate-sized bite wound on her leg and lacerations to other parts of her body.

She remained calm after the attack and “handled it very well”.

“She was conscious the whole time, but had a pretty good gash on her leg.”

Porpoise Bay is a popular place, well known for it’s resident Hector dolphins – I’ve been in the surf there with dolphins riding waves within meters of us.

Department of Conservation marine scientist Clinton Duffy said a range of shark species could be found in that area, including great whites, mako, blue sharks and broadnosed seven-gill sharks.

“And the species most likely to be involved in an attack is either going to be a seven-gill or a great white shark.”

It remained extremely rare for swimmers and surfers to encounter sharks in the wild, let alone be attacked by them.

An attack was reported in 2014 in Porpoise Bay, and another attack. Stuff: Shark attacks Southland surfer

A surfer has suffered three shark bites to his leg in an attack in a Southland bay.

The surfer, 28, was on his board about 50m out from Porpoise Bay Beach, near Curio Bay, last night when the attack happened, police said.

The man was bitten from his thigh to his calf and there was “lots of blood”, a police spokesman said.

A St John spokeswoman said the man had deep lacerations to his leg but was transported to Invercargill Hospital in a stable condition.

The Department of Conservation have been notified, and notices are being put up at Porpoise Bay to warn people of the attack and advise them not to swim there until further notice.

Two weeks ago Invercargill doctor James Grant was also attacked by a shark in Southland’s Garden Bay.

He fought off what was believed to be a sevengill shark, and stitched himself up before his friends took him to hospital.

Garden Bay is 60 km west of Invercargill at the bottom of the South Island, near Colac Bay (not far from  Riverton)

Porpoise Bay is 80 km east of Invercargill.




Shark attack followed by media frenzy

I first saw the news on Twitter that there had been a shark attack at Muriwai. Then came the news there had been a death. Simple, factual, chilling.

I tweeted:

Sadly, in response to what I’m seeing on twitter – the media sharks smell blood. Shocking news but distasteful haste for a scoop.

Inane exaggerations like “We’re told shark was massive, more than 2 metres” (2 meters doesn’t sound big).

“Do you have photos of the scene?”
“Are you at Muriwai? We want to hear from you!”
“Great work from @namedeleted live from Muriwai” as if it was sport.

I find the clamour to get on scene and get pictures and eyewitness reports to be distasteful, especially in awful circumstances like this.

I was going to list offending tweets along with names and organisastions but have decided to not repeat the unseemly spectacle.

UPDATE: I just saw a tweet that referred to a

Brilliant headline!!!

I was going to do something about that but they must have had second thoughts and deleted the tweet.