Great White Attack in Carlsbad

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Great White Shark (Photo from 'Pterantula' via Wikimedia)

Great White Shark (Photo from 'Pterantula' via Wikimedia)

A woman is still recovering from a shark attack that occurred on Tuesday at Terramar in Carlsbad.

Bethany Edmund, an Encinitas resident, was in 8 to 10 feet of water when the attack took place. Edmund told Channel 10 news, “I felt a sharp pinching pain on my foot. I started swimming sideways and that’s when I got hit for the third time.” It was about 30 seconds after she started swimming that she was struck and propelled nearly a foot out of the water. She was struck once more causing a large bruise on her leg.

“I literally felt someone take my ankle and yank me backwards, and I thought it was the swimmers that were near me. So I surfaced and I looked around and said, ‘Hey, don’t pull my foot, it’s not funny guys,’ and they were like, ‘We didn’t touch you; we’re 10 feet from you.'”

The great white then sank his teeth into her calve.  “I went and caught the next wave and I felt the same sharp pain on my calve.” She then got pulled under as the shark shook her around for four or five seconds at which point she kicked it and it let her go.  “I was in waist-high water and I started running.”

A shark expert categorized the bite as that of a baby Great White shark, approximately 5 to 6 feet long. It is believed that the woman’s bright green toe-nail polish is what instigated the attack. The expert believed that the shark continued to harass her because she was not leaving the apparent feeding ground.

After the attack, lifeguards looked for the shark but were unable to locate it. This is the first Great White sighting in this area of San Diego. Last year a man was killed in a shark attack in Solana Beach.

Shark sightings  and even more so, attacks, are not a normal occurrence for San Diegans. The hot spot for sightings in San Diego has historically been La Jolla because of Seal Beach, which is home to an abundance of seals and other sea life.

In a study published in the Journal of Zoology, Great White sharks use many of the same tactics when hunting as a serial killer would do. Researchers tracked 340 sharks in South Africa and found that they overwhelmingly tend to stalk their prey from a distance, strategically hunt and learn from their mistakes.

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